Function scores of different surgeries in the treatment of knee osteoarthritis: A PRISMA-compliant systematic review and network-meta analysis

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Osteoarthritis (OA) is the third most common diagnosis made by general practitioners in older patients. The aim of this study was to compare the function scores of different surgeries in the treatment of knee osteoarthritis (KOA).


Cohort studies about different surgical treatments for KOA were included with a comprehensive search in PubMed, Cochrane Library, and Embase. The standard mean difference (SMD) value was evaluated and the surface under the cumulative ranking (SUCRA) curve was drawn with a combination of direct and indirect evidence. A total of 265 eligible patients were enrolled and served as the nonoperative treatment group, osteotomy group, unicompartmental knee arthroplasty (UKA) group, total knee arthroplasty (TKA) group, and arthroscopic surgery group. Before surgery, 6 months after surgery, 1 year after surgery and 5 years after surgery, the hospital for special surgery (HSS) knee score, Lysholm score, Western Ontario and McMaster Universities Osteoarthritis Index (WOMAC) score, and American knee society score (KSS) were recorded.


A total of 9 cohort studies including 954 patients with KOA were finally enrolled into the study. The network-meta analysis revealed that osteotomy and UKA treatments showed a better efficacy on improving the function score. Our cohort study further confirmed that, a higher HSS knee score after 1 year and higher Lysholm score after 6 months and 1 year were observed in the osteotomy and UKA groups, while better HSS knee score and KSS after 6 months and 1 year were showed in the osteotomy and TKA groups. In the TKA group, Lysholm score and KSS were higher and WOMAC score was lower after 5 years than other groups. WOMAC score was lowest in the UKA group after 6 months, 1 year and 5 years of surgery.


These results provide evidence that function scores of patients with KOA were improved by osteotomy, UKA, TKA, and arthroscopic surgery. And osteotomy and UKA showed better short-term efficacy, while TKA appeared better long-term efficacy.

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