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The established treatment for bacterial arthritis of the knee joint is arthroscopic surgery with irrigation and debridement. The aim of this article is to summarize the relevant data in treating bacterial arthritis of the knee joint, and based on these findings to present a novel irrigation suction system, tested in a cadaver study, as an additional tool in the postoperative treatment phase of arthroscopic surgery for knee joint infections. The novel automated irrigation-suction system presented here was compared to conventional continuous suction irrigation in a total of six knee joints. All knee joints were filled with 80 ml methylene blue stain and rinsed by two different methods. Fluid specimens were taken after ten and twenty minutes to be compared by photometric extinction measurement at a wave length of 500 nm. After ten minutes, the average extinction was e(1C) = 0.8 for the continuous suction irrigation and e(1N) = 0.4 for the novel irrigation-suction system. After twenty minutes, we recorded an average extinction of e(2C) = 0.3 for continuous suction irrigation and e(2N) = 0.001 for the novel irrigation-suction system. The students t-test revealed superior results after ten and twenty minutes of washing out the knee joints with a p < 0.001 for the novel irrigation-suction system. A novel irrigation-suction system may be an effective tool for postoperative knee joint irrigation in arthroscopic therapy for bacterial arthritis of the knee. Further animal studies are needed to verify the effects in vivo.

Citation

Atesch Ateschrang, Dirk Albrecht, Steffen Schröter, Bernhard Hirt, Kuno Weise, Jürgen H Dolderer. Septic arthritis of the knee: presentation of a novel irrigation-suction system tested in a cadaver study. BMC musculoskeletal disorders. 2011;12:180

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PMID: 21819619

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