To evaluate the serial changes in the joint space width (JSW) of the medial and lateral compartments after medial open-wedge high tibial osteotomy (MOWHTO) and its associated factors.
The medial and lateral weight-bearing JSWs were measured on serial radiographs and analyzed preoperatively and postoperatively within 2 weeks, as well as at 3 months, 6 months, 1 year, and 2 years. Associations between the medial and lateral JSWs and age, body mass index, mechanical axis, correction angle, lateral distal femoral angle, medial proximal tibial angle, joint line convergence angle (JLCA), JLCA on stress radiographs, and arthroscopic cartilage status were examined. Clinical outcome was measured according to the Knee Society objective and functional scores.
Seventy-one patients who underwent MOWHTO with locking-plate fixation were analyzed. The respective mean medial and lateral JSWs on serial radiographs were as follows: 3.08 mm and 5.14 mm preoperatively, 3.10 mm and 4.63 mm postoperatively, 3.37 mm and 4.57 mm at 3 months, 3.40 mm and 4.59 mm at 6 months, 3.44 mm and 4.57 mm at 1 year, and 3.42 mm and 4.64 mm at 2 years. At 3 months, the medial JSW increased (P < .001), whereas the lateral JSW decreased immediately (P < .001). JSW showed no significant differences at other time points. Preoperative and postoperative JLCAs and medial femoral and tibial cartilage grades were associated with medial JSW changes (P = .021). However, no significant parameters were associated with decreases in the lateral JSW (P > .05). The postoperative Knee Society objective and functional scores improved and were maintained.
After MOWHTO, the medial JSW increased at 3 months postoperatively and the lateral JSW decreased immediately. The preoperative and postoperative JLCAs and the medial femoral and tibial cartilage grades were associated with the change in the medial JSW. However, no significant parameters were associated with the decrease in the lateral JSW.
Level of Evidence
Level IV, case series of therapeutic study.
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Published online: April 29, 2021
Accepted: April 8, 2021
Received: September 7, 2020
See commentary on page 3324
The authors report the following potential conflicts of interest or sources of funding: This study was supported by a research grant from Pusan National University Yangsan Hospital. Full ICMJE author disclosure forms are available for this article online, as supplementary material.
© 2021 by the Arthroscopy Association of North America