Meniscus injuries are common in both adolescent and adult athletes. However, there are limited data assessing the impact of age at time of surgery on repair failure risk and patient-reported outcome scores.
To determine whether age at time of meniscus repair surgery affects failure risk and patient-reported outcome scores. Methods: Patients who underwent meniscus repair between 2006 and 2013 were evaluated for meniscus repair failure and patient-reported outcome scores using the Knee Osteoarthritis Outcome Score (KOOS), International Knee Documentation Committee (IKDC) score, and Marx Activity score at mean follow-up 6.5 ±2.0 years post-operative. Controlling for concomitant ACL reconstruction and BMI, a multivariable linear regression analysis was used to assess the influence of patient age on patient-reported outcome scores. Meniscus repair failure risk was compared between patients age 18 years and younger at surgery and patients over 18 with a chi-squared test. Logistic regression was also used to assess the relationship between age and repair failure risk controlling for concomitant ACL reconstruction and BMI.
A total of 170 patients (mean age 27.8 ± 10.1years, 59% male) were identified, including 29 patients age 18 and younger and 141 patients over 18. Increasing patient age was associated with significantly lower IKDC (p=0.027), KOOS-ADL (p=0.003), and Marx activity scores (p<0.001). Repair failure occurred in 46 patients (27.1%) overall, including 7 failures (24.1%) in patients 18 and under and 39 failures (27.7%) in patients over 18 (p = 0.69). The logistic regression analysis demonstrated no association between age and meniscus repair failure risk when controlled for ACL reconstruction and BMI (p=0.69).
Increased age is associated with poorer IKDC, KOOS-ADL, and Marx Activity scores following meniscus repair. However, there is no difference in meniscus re-tear risk between adolescent patients and adults.