Osteophyte development restabilizes the knee at the cost of range of motion

Our recent study, Osteophyte Formation After ACL Rupture in Mice is Associated With Joint Restabilization and Loss of Range of Motion, published in the Journal of Orthopaedic Research examined osteophyte development throughout the full time course of osteoarthritis (OA) and its effect on joint function. We used our noninvasive ACL rupture mouse model of post-traumatic OA (PTOA) to investigate how osteophyte formation correlated with changes in joint stability, characterized by anterior-posterior joint laxity, and range of motion (ROM). Stability and ROM both increased immediately after ACL rupture, but began decreasing only 2 weeks post-injury. Stability was restored to control levels after 8 weeks of injury, but ROM in injured limbs was significantly less than that of uninjured knees. These changes in joint function correlated well with osteophyte growth, but only if early chondrophyte development was also taken into consideration. This study suggests that while osteophytes do play a role in joint stabilization during PTOA, chondrophyte formation must be taken into consideration. Few studies currently examine chondrophyte formation, and these findings emphasize the importance of increasing our understanding of chondrophytes in osteophyte formation and OA progression.

Be sure to check out our study in the Journal of Orthopaedic Research!

Hsia et al. J Orthop Res (2016). DOI: 10.1002/jor.23252.

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