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Treatment of knee osteoarthritis by intra-articular injection of concentrated autologous adipose tissue: a twenty four month follow-up study

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To evaluate the safety and efficacy of autologous concentrated adipose tissue for the treatment of knee OA.


Eighty-seven patients with knee arthritis from grade 1 to 3, according to Kellgren-Lawrence scale, have been treated with knee arthroscopy and successive intra-articular injection of concentrated adipose tissue. The efficacy of the treatment has been evaluated by the Knee Society Score, Lysholm Score, Forgotten Joint Score, Knee Injury and Osteoarthritis Outcome Score and Noise Reporting Scale.


A total of 78/87 patients concluded the study. Overall, the patients were satisfied with the intervention and a significant reduction of the pain was observed in 67 patients, while the others did not report any change in pain severity or worsening. A statistically significant improvement was observed in the considered orthopaedic index, and no major adverse effects were described. The first week after the intervention, most patients reported knee swelling. Five patients failed because they underwent knee replacement surgery between five and nine months from treatment.


In patients with knee OA, a single intra-articular injection of autologous adipose tissue reduced knee pain, stiffness, improved knee function and quality of life without severe complications.

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This work was supported by Compagnia di San Paolo and CRT Foundations, Banca d’Italia and Fondazione Ricerca Molinette ONLUS.

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Each author contributed significantly to one or more aspects of the study. The work has not been published before in any language, is not being considered for publication elsewhere and has been read and approved by all authors.

Corresponding author

Correspondence to Ilaria Roato.

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The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.

Ethical approval

This study was performed in line with the principles of the Declaration of Helsinki. The study was authorized by the local Institutional Revision Board (IRB) in accordance with the ethical standards (N.Registro CER 068REG2017).

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Informed consent was obtained from patients to participate at the study and to publish the relative data.

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Bistolfi, A., Roato, I., Fornelli, G. et al. Treatment of knee osteoarthritis by intra-articular injection of concentrated autologous adipose tissue: a twenty four month follow-up study. International Orthopaedics (SICOT) 45, 627–633 (2021).

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