Osteoarthritis of the knee

Dr Henry Knipe et al.

Osteoarthritis of the knee is very common and is a major cause of morbidity, especially in the older population. 

The hallmarks of knee osteoarthritis are the same for most other joints:

  • joint space narrowing: usually asymmetric, typically of the medial tibiofemoral compartment and/or patellofemoral compartment 3
  • subchondral sclerosis
  • osteophyte formation: patellofemoral osteophytes are more associated with pain 3
Radiograph

Plain radiographs are the workhorse of imaging including follow-up, although there is a poor correlation between radiographic findings and clinical symptoms 1,2

Grading
MRI

The following features are seen additionally on MRI 1:

Often the patient will proceed to total knee joint replacement (arthroplasty). In younger patients with unicompartmental symptoms, a high tibial osteotomy may be performed. 

Other causes of degenerative joint disease, for example:

Knee pathology

The knee is a complex synovial joint that can be affected by a range of pathologies:

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Article Information

rID: 37587
Section: Pathology
Synonyms or Alternate Spellings:
  • Knee osteoarthritis
  • Knee OA

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Cases and Figures

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    Case 1: severe bilateral knee OA
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    Case 2: severe bilateral knee OA
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    Case 3: with high tibial osteotomy
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    Case 5: patellofemoral compartment (bilateral)
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    Case 4: total knee joint replacement
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    Case 5: on CT
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    Case 6: patellofemoral compartment
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