Gender differences in the accuracy of joint line tenderness for arthroscopically confirmed meniscal tears
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The reliability of joint line tenderness was previously investigated among other clinical tests for the diagnosis of meniscal pathology with variable results. The aim of this study was to evaluate and compare the accuracy of joint line tenderness as a clinical diagnosing test for arthroscopically confirmed meniscal tears between males and females.
Materials and methods
For the purpose of preoperative joint line tenderness accuracy calculations, this study included male and female groups of patients who have had knee arthroscopy following preoperative diagnosis of meniscal tear. Overall, 195 patients were included in the study, 134 males and 61 females. The mean age was 43.4 (13–76) years.
In the male group, the diagnosis of meniscal tear by joint line tenderness was correct in 84 (62.7 %) of 134 knees for the medial side and in 115 (85.8 %) for the lateral side. In the female group, the diagnosis was correct in 35 (57.4 %) of 61 knees for the medial side and in 57 (93.4 %) for the lateral side. In order to refine the accuracy of medial joint line tenderness, the data were recalculated for patients with medial meniscal tears and no chondral lesion or cruciate ligament tears; however, the accuracy remained low.
The physical finding of joint line tenderness of the knee as a test for lateral meniscal tear was found reliable in both males and females. For medial meniscal tears, the test had low reliability and thus less useful if used alone, in both genders.
KeywordsJoint line tenderness Knee Meniscus Accuracy
Compliance with ethical standards
Conflict of interest
All authors declare no financial relationships.
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