Question: What is an osteotomy and when is it used to treat pain resulting from osteoarthritis?
Answer: Osteotomy is a technique by which patients can treat knee osteoarthritis and osteoarthritis of other joints. It is a surgical technique that has been around for a long time and has proven that it does improve patients' quality of life.
However, the patients that are most appropriate for osteotomy are few and far between. These patient, usually, are patients that are younger and quite active, such as a young construction worker in his 30s and perhaps early 40s. In short, osteotomy cuts the bones and realigns them such that a damaged portion of a joint sees less body weight and it is realigned such that the normal portion of the joint sees more body weight.
By doing this, it reduces the weight of the arthritic area of the joint, decreases that weight, and that weight decreases a patient's pain, and thereby improves their function. Osteotomies take a long time for a patient to recover from the procedure, and often result in excellent patient satisfaction and improved patient function.