Every tenth operation for knee osteoarthritis could be avoided

Every tenth operation for knee osteoarthritis could be avoided

JAccording to a DAK study, every tenth operation for knee osteoarthritis could be avoided and an artificial joint delayed by several years. There is a “lack of conservative, non-drug therapy options,” stated the DAK-Gesundheit health care report published on Friday. Before knee surgery, not all specialist or physiotherapeutic treatment options are often exhausted.

Almost every fourth German citizen is affected by knee arthrosis at least once in his life. In every fifth affected person, the joint preservation fails, so that an artificial knee joint has to be used. According to the report, better care would make it possible to avoid up to eleven and a half percent of these operations and delay knee replacement by an average of seven years.

According to the report, 15 percent of those insured have no treatment contact with established orthopedists in the year before a knee joint replacement. For seven percent, this applies to the last five years before knee surgery. More than one in ten had not had their knee x-ray in the five years prior to hospital admission. In addition, at 43.3 percent, almost half of those affected did not receive any physiotherapy in the five years before their knee replacement.

Overall, women are more frequently affected by so-called symptomatic osteoarthritis of the knee than men. Regionally, there are an above-average number of cases in Saxony, Thuringia, Brandenburg and Saxony-Anhalt, while the impact in Hamburg, Schleswig-Holstein, Bremen and Hesse is particularly low. A possible cause sees the DAC in the likewise high incidence of obesity in the new federal states. Extreme obesity is a risk factor for knee osteoarthritis.

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