Articular surface of the medial proximal tibia is aligned parallel to the ground in three-dimensional space under weight-bearing conditions in healthy and varus osteoarthritic knees. Knee Surg Sports Traumatol Arthrosc 28, 3232–3239 (2020).

Articular surface of the medial proximal tibia is aligned parallel to the ground in three-dimensional space under weight-bearing conditions in healthy and varus osteoarthritic knees

Mochizuki, T., Koga, Y., Mori, T. et al.
Knee

Purpose

To test the hypothesis that an inclined articular surface on the medial proximal tibia is aligned more parallel to the ground in three-dimensional (3D) space under weight-bearing (WB) conditions (parallel phenomenon) than under non-WB (NWB) conditions in healthy and varus osteoarthritic knees.

Methods

We examined 55 healthy knees (26 women, 29 men; mean age, 70 ± 6 years) and 108 varus osteoarthritic knees (66 women, 16 men; mean age, 74 ± 7 years). For the evaluation under WB conditions, a 3D assessment system was used on biplanar long-leg radiographs and 3D bone models using a 3D-to-2D image registration technique. In addition, the least square method was used to determine the approximation plane. The angles between the normal vector for the approximation plane of an articular surface on the medial proximal tibia and each axis of the tibial or world coordinate system were calculated.

Results

Morphologically, the inclination of the approximation plane was steeper in osteoarthritic knees than in healthy knees (p < 0.0001). The approximation plane was aligned more parallel to the ground under WB conditions than under NWB conditions in healthy (p < 0.0001) and osteoarthritic knees (p < 0.0001).

Conclusions

The parallel phenomenon in the medial proximal tibia was confirmed for healthy and varus osteoarthritic knees. The medial proximal tibia plays an important role in the parallel phenomenon, assumingly associated with varus alignment and varus thrust. The inclination of the medial proximal tibia may become a new parameter for imaging investigations.

Level of evidence

III.


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