Obesity and Knee Arthroscopy – a Review

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Obesity is currently a global epidemic, often referred to as “globesity”, impacting the life of millions worldwide. A risk factor for many diseases, obesity can also be linked to developing intra-articular lesions of the knee, affecting the menisci, ligaments and cartilage. Furthermore, obesity has been shown to influence the outcome of surgical interventions, including those of the musculoskeletal system. Although many studies addressed the relationship of obesity and joint replacement, articles relating to arthroscopy and obesity, and knee arthroscopy in particular, are a bit scarcer. The majority of data suggest that an increase in BMI leads to a similar increase in the rates of intra- and postoperative complications, and most authors agree that a higher body mass index can influence both the procedure itself and its outcomes, including the subjective results reported by the patients. Still, some studies show different results, especially in patients that are overweight or with low-grade obesity, where the outcomes are comparable to those of the non-obese population. Thus, it can be concluded that obesity is an important patient characteristic that needs to be taken into consideration when planning, performing, and assessing the results of knee arthroscopy.

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