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Foot Ankle Clin. 2002 Sep;7(3):515-27.

Joint distraction as an alternative for the treatment of osteoarthritis.

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  • 1Department of Orthopaedic Surgery, University Medical Centre, PO Box 85090, 3508 AB Utrecht, The Netherlands.


Irrespective of underlying mechanisms, the long-term efficacy of joint distraction in the treatment of severe ankle osteoarthritis at young age validates the concept of joint distraction in the treatment of osteoarthritis. Therefore, joint distraction in the case of severe ankle osteoarthritis may be a treatment of choice. This opens the possibility to study joint distraction as a treatment for other joints. Because knee osteoarthritis is much more common, it is a much greater social and economic problem. Beneficial effects of joint distraction in the case of ankle osteoarthritis, and specifically in the treatment of more common forms of osteoarthritis such as severe knee and hip osteoarthritis, may therefore have a great impact, especially in view of the increasing age of our population.

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