Comparison of Clinical and Radiologic Results Between Partial Meniscectomy and Refixation of Medial Meniscus Posterior Root Tears: A Minimum 5-Year Follow-up

Arthroscopy. 2015 Oct;31(10):1941-50. doi: 10.1016/j.arthro.2015.03.035. Epub 2015 Jun 18.


Purpose: To compare the clinical and radiologic results of partial meniscectomy with those of refixation in patients with medial meniscus posterior root tears (MMPRTs) at a minimum 5-year follow-up.

Methods: Between 2005 and 2009, patients with MMPRTs who had been followed up for at least 5 years after a partial meniscectomy (group M, n = 20) or pullout repair (group R, n = 37) were recruited. The mean follow-up duration was 67.5 months in group M and 72.0 months in group R. Clinical assessments, including the Lysholm score and International Knee Documentation Committee (IKDC) Subjective Knee Form score, and radiographic assessments, including the Kellgren-Lawrence (K-L) grade and medial joint space width, were evaluated preoperatively and at final follow-up. We compared the preoperative results with the final results in each group, and we compared the final results of groups M and R. Five-year survival rates were also evaluated.

Results: The mean Lysholm score (P = .039) and IKDC score (P = .037) improved significantly. However, the width of the medial joint space (P < .001) and K-L grade (P < .001) worsened significantly in both groups. When we compared the final results, group R had significantly better Lysholm scores (P = .002) and IKDC scores (P < .001) than group M. Group R showed less K-L grade progression (P = .005) and less medial joint space narrowing (P < .001) than group M. The rate of conversion to total knee arthroplasty was 35% in group M, whereas there was no conversion to total knee arthroplasty in group R. The 5-year survival rates in groups M and R were 75% and 100%, respectively (P < .001).

Conclusions: For MMPRTs, refixation was more effective than partial meniscectomy in terms of the clinical and radiologic outcomes and survival for at least 5 years' follow-up. Refixation slowed the progression of arthritic changes compared with partial meniscectomy, although it did not prevent the progression of arthrosis completely.

Level of evidence: Level III, retrospective comparative study.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Arthroplasty, Replacement, Knee / statistics & numerical data
  • Arthroscopy / methods
  • Female
  • Follow-Up Studies
  • Humans
  • Joint Diseases / surgery
  • Knee Joint / surgery
  • Male
  • Menisci, Tibial / surgery*
  • Middle Aged
  • Osteoarthritis / surgery
  • Retrospective Studies
  • Rupture / surgery
  • Tibial Meniscus Injuries
  • Treatment Outcome
  • Wound Healing