Despite obtaining hopeful results, new biological therapies (stem cells, growth factors, chondrocyte implantation, among others) are not yet able to replace, shortly, replacement surgery as the treatment of choice for osteoarthritis of the advanced knee. The regenerative therapies could be the key to the future for the treatment of mild to moderate osteoarthritis (numerous studies and clinical trials are studying the use of stem cells, plasma rich in growth factors or washout of senescent cells of joints to slow down, stop, and even reverse the progression of osteoarthritis), but it has not yet been possible to optimize methods for the production of stem cells to generate sufficient numbers, with adequate longevity, and at affordable costs.
Thus, for example, the in vitro production of cartilage cells has turned out to be more complicated than expected, since factors such as the mechanical loads to which these cells undergo during their development must be taken into account.
Therefore, at present, the only effective method for the treatment of advanced knee osteoarthritis, which allows the patient to recover mobility and achieve a significant improvement in their quality of life, is joint replacement surgery in India.
Prevention, a key factor for the surgical and non-surgical management of osteoarthritis
Surgery, thanks to new surgical techniques and postoperative management, is getting better and better results, with an ideal implant life of about 20 years. In addition to the new techniques, the importance of taking into account additional factors to improve the chances of a successful intervention has also been demonstrated:
• Have under control chronic diseases such as hypertension or diabetes (also associated with obesity and overweight).
• Tone the muscle mass before the intervention.
• Decrease the body mass index (BMI) before the arthroplasty: preventable factors such as obesity have also been linked with an increased endanger of infections and shorter implant longevity.
• Undergo tests of nutritional deficiencies (to prevent infections and avoid factors that could hinder wound healing).
On the other hand, if knee replacement surgery in India is the only method that has been proven effective for the treatment of advanced osteoarthritis, this is not the case with mild to moderate osteoarthritis, for which several options make it possible to slow down the moment of the surgical intervention as much as possible.
Given that the usefulness of a joint replacement in moderate osteoarthritis has not been demonstrated, preventive measures such as strengthening the joint musculature, reducing weight (through moderate exercise and a balanced diet) or the use of drugs modifying the course of the pathology (such as the chondro-protectors) allow, on the one side, to slow down the moment of carrying out a surgical intervention, and, on the other hand, optimize the chances of a successful implant , with a long half-life, and a good improvement in the quality of life of the patient, and even their life expectancy .