Background: The extent to which concomitant cartilage repair provides an improvement in clinical outcomes after osteotomy is unclear. Purpose: To compare studies reporting clinical outcomes after isolated osteotomy with or without cartilage repair for osteoarthritis (OA) or focal chondral defects (FCDs) of the knee joint. Study Design: Systematic review; Level of evidence, 4. Methods: A systematic review was conducted according to the PRISMA (Preferred Reporting Items for Systematic Reviews and Meta-Analyses) guidelines by searching PubMed, Cochrane Library, and Embase databases. The search was done to identify comparative studies that directly compared outcomes between isolated osteotomy—high tibial osteotomy or distal femoral osteotomy—and osteotomy with concomitant cartilage repair for OA or FCDs of the knee joint. Patients were evaluated based on reoperation rate, magnetic resonance observation of cartilage repair tissue score, macroscopic International Cartilage Regeneration & Joint Preservation Society score, and patient-reported outcomes. Results: In total, 6 studies—level 2 evidence (n = 2);, level 3 evidence (n = 3);, and level 4 evidence (n = 1)—met the inclusion criteria, including a total of 228 patients undergoing osteotomy alone (group A) and 255 patients undergoing osteotomy with concomitant cartilage repair (group B). The mean patient age was 53.4 and 54.8 years, respectively, and the mean preoperative alignment was 6.6° and 6.7° of varus in groups A and B, respectively. The mean follow-up time was 71.5 months. All studies assessed medial compartment lesions with varus deformity. One study compared osteotomy alone for patients with medial compartment OA versus osteotomy with autologous chondrocyte implantation for patients with FCDs of the medial compartment. Three other studies included a heterogeneous cohort of patients with OA and FCDs in both groups. Only 1 study isolated its comparison to patients with medial compartment OA and 1 study isolated its comparison to patients with FCDs. Conclusion: There is limited evidence with substantial heterogeneity between studies on clinical outcomes after osteotomy alone versus osteotomy with cartilage repair for OA or FCDs of the knee joint. At this time, no conclusion can be made regarding the role of additional cartilage procedures in treating medial compartment OA or FCDs. Further studies are needed that isolate specific disease pathology and specific cartilage procedures.
- cartilage repair
- focal chondral defect
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Orthopedics and Sports Medicine