The Knee Diaries: Degenerative Joint Disease

A 65 year old male with chief complaint of knee pain, presenting with bone on bone osteoarthritis of left knee was referred to us by his physician for prevention of total knee replacement. Patient past history is positive for a Basketball injury in 1980, which was followed by a knee surgery. He is otherwise healthy, does not smoke and drinks only on social bases. There is no family history of osteoarthritis. His symptoms are specific to pain, stairs specially bother him. He experiences stiffness after sitting more than 10 minutes. On the exam the knee is extremely bowlegged.

Discussion: Bowlegged ness produces a disturbance in the biomechanics of the knee and misalignment between the involved muscular skeleton system . This contributes to Degenerative Joint Disease. A recent Northwestern University study concluded that people with arthritis or DJD (Degenerative Joint Disease) whose knees are misalignment with their ankles and feet have up to five times the risk of their getting worse. It is very important for the knee to be be aligned properly. Patients who become bowlegged is usually because of more pressure on the medial (inner aspect of the) knees. This condition is also known as "Genu Varus." This abnormal distribution of weight causes wearing of the cartilage and joint to accelerate and makes arthritis worse. In this condition legs are bowed outwards in the standing position.

Case Study Date: 9/25/2006