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Natural history and clinical significance of meniscal tears over 8 years in a midlife cohort


Khan, HI and Aitken, D and Ding, C and Blizzard, L and Pelletier, JP and Martel-Pelletier, J and Cicuttini, F and Jones, G, Natural history and clinical significance of meniscal tears over 8 years in a midlife cohort, BMC Musculoskeletal Disorders, 17 Article 4. ISSN 1471-2474 (2016) [Refereed Article]


Copyright Statement

2016 Khan et al. Licensed under Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International (CC BY 4)

DOI: doi:10.1186/s12891-015-0862-1


BACKGROUND: There is limited longitudinal data available on the natural history of meniscal tears especially in middle-aged adults with a low prevalence of osteoarthritis (OA). The aim of this study was to describe the natural history of meniscal tears over 8 years and the relationship with change in knee pain and structures.

METHODS: One hundred ninety eight participants [mean age 47 (28-63); 57 % female] were studied at baseline and 8 years later. Approximately half were the adult offspring of subjects who had a knee replacement performed for knee OA and the remainder were randomly selected controls. Meniscal tears/extrusion, cartilage volume/defects, bone marrow lesions (BMLs) and effusion were assessed on MRI. Knee pain was assessed using the Western Ontario and McMaster Universities Osteoarthritis Index.

RESULTS: 22 % of the participants had at least one meniscal tear at any site at baseline. Over 8 years, 16 % of the participants had an increase in severity of meniscal tears while none improved. Increase in meniscal tear score was associated with worsening knee pain (β = +2.81 (+1.40, +4.22)), with offspring having a significantly greater increase in pain severity compared to controls. BMI and presence of osteophytes at baseline, but not knee injury, predicted change in tears, whereas change in meniscal tears was independently associated with cartilage volume loss, change in BMLs and change in meniscal extrusion.

CONCLUSION: Change in meniscal tears shares risk factors with knee OA and is independently associated with worsening knee pain and structural damage suggesting that meniscal tears are on the knee OA causal pathway.

Item Details

Item Type:Refereed Article
Keywords:Knee, Osteoarthritis, Magnetic Resonance Imaging, Radiographs, Meniscus
Research Division:Biomedical and Clinical Sciences
Research Group:Clinical sciences
Research Field:Rheumatology and arthritis
Objective Division:Health
Objective Group:Clinical health
Objective Field:Clinical health not elsewhere classified
UTAS Author:Khan, HI (Dr Hussain Khan)
UTAS Author:Aitken, D (Associate Professor Dawn Aitken)
UTAS Author:Ding, C (Professor Chang-Hai Ding)
UTAS Author:Blizzard, L (Professor Leigh Blizzard)
UTAS Author:Jones, G (Professor Graeme Jones)
ID Code:107492
Year Published:2016
Web of Science® Times Cited:13
Deposited By:Menzies Institute for Medical Research
Deposited On:2016-03-17
Last Modified:2017-11-01
Downloads:205 View Download Statistics

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