The Knee, ISSN: 1873-5800, Vol: 20, Issue: 5, Page: 316-8

Inflammatory predictors of ongoing pain 2 years following knee replacement surgery

Gandhi, Rajiv; Santone, David; Takahashi, Mark; Dessouki, Omar; Mahomed, Nizar N


The prevalence of unrelieved pain following total knee arthroplasty (TKA) is substantial.


We asked if cytokine markers of inflammation in preoperative serum or knee synovial fluid (SF) would predict pain 2 years following TKA.


Demographic data and functional outcomes were recorded at baseline and 2 years with the WOMAC index. Serum and SF tissue samples were collected at the time of surgery. Linear regression modeling was used to determine the relationship between SF/serum inflammatory markers and a lesser improvement in self reported pain at two years follow-up.


Of our 28 patient cohort, significant correlations between serum and SF levels were found for IL-1β (p < 0.002), MIP-1β (p < 0.001), adiponectin (p < 0.001) and leptin (p < 0.001). Adjusted analysis showed that greater SF concentrations of TNF-α, MMP-13 and IL-6 were independent predictors of less pain improvement at two years follow-up (p < 0.05).


Those patients, having ongoing pain despite no clinical or radiological cause, may have an inflammatory profile characterizing a predisposition to ongoing pain after TKA.

Level of Evidence

Prognosis study, Level 2.

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