Treatment of knee osteoarthritis by intra-articular injection of concentrated autologous adipose tissue: a twenty four month follow-up study

Int Orthop. 2021 Mar;45(3):627-633. doi: 10.1007/s00264-020-04923-0. Epub 2021 Jan 4.


Purpose: To evaluate the safety and efficacy of autologous concentrated adipose tissue for the treatment of knee OA.

Methods: Eighty-seven patients with knee arthritis from grade 1 to 3, according to Kellgren-Lawrence scale, have been treated with knee arthroscopy and successive intra-articular injection of concentrated adipose tissue. The efficacy of the treatment has been evaluated by the Knee Society Score, Lysholm Score, Forgotten Joint Score, Knee Injury and Osteoarthritis Outcome Score and Noise Reporting Scale.

Results: A total of 78/87 patients concluded the study. Overall, the patients were satisfied with the intervention and a significant reduction of the pain was observed in 67 patients, while the others did not report any change in pain severity or worsening. A statistically significant improvement was observed in the considered orthopaedic index, and no major adverse effects were described. The first week after the intervention, most patients reported knee swelling. Five patients failed because they underwent knee replacement surgery between five and nine months from treatment.

Conclusions: In patients with knee OA, a single intra-articular injection of autologous adipose tissue reduced knee pain, stiffness, improved knee function and quality of life without severe complications.

Keywords: Arthritis; Concentrated autologous adipose tissue; Knee; Mesenchymal stem cells.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adipose Tissue
  • Follow-Up Studies
  • Humans
  • Injections, Intra-Articular
  • Osteoarthritis, Knee* / surgery
  • Quality of Life
  • Transplantation, Autologous
  • Treatment Outcome