IS WEIGHT LOSS ASSOCIATED WITH LESS PROGRESSION OF CHANGES IN KNEE ARTICULAR CARTILAGE AMONG OBESE AND OVERWEIGHT PATIENTS AS ASSESSED WITH MR IMAGING OVER 48 MONTHS? DATA FROM THE OSTEOARTHRITIS INITIATIVE

Review written by Anthony Teoli info

BACKGROUND & OBJECTIVE

Obesity is associated with both the acceleration of cartilage degeneration and worsening of clinical symptoms in patients with osteoarthritis. The assocaition between obesity and osteoarthritis is in part biomechanical (i.e. joint loading, alterations in gait patterns, etc.) and in part systemic (i.e. metabolic changes that may impair cartilage homeostasis and cause both systemic and local inflamamtion). The objective of this study was to longitudinally investigate the association of weight loss with progression of cartilage changes at magnetic resonance (MR) imaging over 48 months in overweight and obese participants compared with participants of stable weight.

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METHODS

Complete body mass index (BMI) data for baseline and 12-, 24-, and 48-month follow-up were available for 4526 study participants. 640 participants (mean age 62.9 years ± 9.1[SD]; 398 women) from the Osteoarthritis Initiative who were overweight or obese were included on this study. The participants had risk factors for osteoarthritis or mild to moderate radiographic findings of osteoarthritis, and were categorized into 3 groups over 48 months:

  • Weight loss of more than 10% (n-82)
  • Weight loss of 5%-10% (n=238)
  • Stable weight (n=320)

Two radiologist assessed cartilage and meniscus defects on right knee 3-T MR images at baseline and 48 months by using the modified Whole-Organ Magnetic Resonance Imaging Score (WORMS).

RESULTS

The participants who lost weight (5-10% weight loss) over 48 months showed significantly lower cartilage degeneration, as assessed with magnetic resonance imaging (MRI). The rates of cartilage degeneration progression were lower with greater weight loss (greater than 10% weight loss).

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