Bone and Joint Institute

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Sports Medicine





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© 2017, The Author(s). Background: Knee osteotomies are proven treatment options, especially in younger patients with unicompartmental knee osteoarthritis, for certain cases of chronic knee instability, or as concomitant treatment for meniscal repair or transplantation surgery. Presumably, these patients wish to stay active. Data on whether these patients return to sport (RTS) activities and return to work (RTW) are scarce. Objectives: Our aim was to systematically review (1) the extent to which patients can RTS and RTW after knee osteotomy and (2) the time to RTS and RTW. Methods: We systematically searched the MEDLINE and Embase databases. Two authors screened and extracted data, including patient demographics, surgical technique, pre- and postoperative sports and work activities, and confounding factors. Two authors assessed methodological quality. Data on pre- and postoperative participation in sports and work were pooled. Results: We included 26 studies, involving 1321 patients (69% male). Mean age varied between 27 and 62 years, and mean follow-up was 4.8 years. The overall risk of bias was low in seven studies, moderate in ten studies, and high in nine studies. RTS was reported in 18 studies and mean RTS was 85%. Reported RTS in studies with a low risk of bias was 82%. No studies reported time to RTS. RTW was reported in 14 studies; mean RTW was 85%. Reported RTW in studies with a low risk of bias was 80%. Time to RTW varied from 10 to 22 weeks. Lastly, only 15 studies adjusted for confounders. Conclusion: Eight out of ten patients returned to sport and work after knee osteotomy. No data were available on time to RTS. A trend toward performing lower-impact sports was observed. Time to RTW varied from 10 to 22 weeks, and almost all patients returned to the same or a higher workload.


Open Access This article is distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License (, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided you give appropriate credit to the original author(s) and the source, provide a link to the Creative Commons license, and indicate if changes were made.

The article was originally published at:

Hoorntje, A., Witjes, S., Kuijer, P.P.F.M. et al. High Rates of Return to Sports Activities and Work After Osteotomies Around the Knee: A Systematic Review and Meta-Analysis. Sports Med 47, 2219–2244 (2017).

Creative Commons License

Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.

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