Gender-specific Knee Implants no More Effective than Standard

August 19, 2010

A study released from the Journal of Bone and Joint Surgery reveals that gender specific total knee prosthesis may not have much clinical benefits.

A study released from the Journal of Bone and Joint Surgery reveals that gender-specific total knee prosthesis may not have many clinical benefits.

Gender-specific total knee replacements are designed to more closely match the anatomy of the female knee; however, the study reveals may prove otherwise.

“We conducted this study to investigate whether women derive less benefit, or perhaps less predictable benefit, from total knee replacement using a standard conventional total knee implant,” said Young-Hoo Kim, M.D., orthopaedic surgeon and lead author of the study, in a press release.

The study examined female patients that had received one gender-specific and one standard prosthesis for at least two years after surgery. Both knees had similar knee scores and similar range of motion while lying down. All patients, except three, were able to bend their knees at least 90 degrees. Patient satisfaction scores illustrated that the standard implants received 8.3 points and the gender-specific implants received 8.1 points. Additionally, the majority of women in the study did not favor one implant over the other.

The study also showed that the standard prosthesis fit women’s knees better than the gender-specific implant.

“Our data demonstrated that the standard prosthesis fit the distal part of the femur (where the thigh and knee connect) better than the gender-specific prosthesis did," said Dr. Kim, of The Joint Replacement Center of Korea, Ewha Women's University School of Medicine in South Korea, in a press release.