Past Articles

Common Knee Surgery No Better Than Sham Surgery?


When going under the knife, the expectation would be to treat and/or cure a problem that can't be treated successfully through less invasive means. However, new research indicates that many surgeries involving the knee are often times no better than doing no surgery at all. In a new study, 146 patients aged 35 to 65 years with knee symptoms consistent with a degenerative medial meniscus tear where knee osteoarthritis was not present underwent either an arthroscopic partial meniscectomy or sham surgery. Fast forward a year after the real or sham surgeries and researchers found no significant difference between those two groups. Arthroscopic surgery on the meniscus, the cartilage in the knee joint, is the most common orthopedic procedure in the US. This study highlights the need to consider and try more non-invasive treatments prior to undergoing surgery, which has it's own associated risks.


Author: ChiroPlanet.com
Source: N Engl J Med 2013; 369:2515-2524. December 26, 2013.