In recent years, there has been growing interest in intra-articular (into the joint) injectable ‘orthobiologic’ treatments for osteoarthritis (OA)1, aiming to relieve symptoms and/or slow down or prevent disease progression before, and/or without, a joint replacement. High quality research into the potential and outcomes of these type of treatments is valid and important.
The COVID-19 pandemic has caused a significant disruption to the normal provision of treatment for patients with osteoarthritis. Versus Arthritis (a charity which supports patients with arthritis) has had callers to their helpline seeking advice on the use of orthobiologics as a treatment option and consequently approached the British Orthopaedic Association (BOA) for a view. In response to this approach the BOA has written this paper to help people who are thinking about trying orthobiologic treatments.
We want to provide a reliable source of information on this topic to help people make informed decisions about their medical care. We hope it will also be a useful resource for all health professionals involved in the care of this group of patients and who would like to know more about these treatments. There is a wide variety of these treatments and the British Orthopaedic Association wishes to provide authoritative advice as to the present state of knowledge to patients and those who advise them. This advice has been adopted by the Council of the BOA in February 2022 and will be updated if further evidence becomes available.Injectable Orthobiologic Treatments for Osteoarthritis
1 Shi WJ, Tjoumakaris FP, Lendner M, et al. Biologic injections for osteoarthritis and articular cartilage damage: can we modify disease? Phys Sportsmed 2017;45(3):203-23.