Can personalised, 3D printed surgical guides improve outcomes of high tibial osteotomy (HTO)?

Disease - Osteoarthritis

Lead applicant - Professor Richie (H.S.) Gill

Organisation - University of Bath

Type of grant - Full Application Treatment

Status of grant - Active

Amount of the original award - £780,210.21

Start date - 01 January 2020

Reference - 22262

Public Summary  

What are the aims of this research? 

High Tibial Osteotomy (HTO) is an operation that corrects the alignment of the knee, to relieve pain and symptoms of early to mid-stage knee osteoarthritis, but the current surgical technique is challenging and can lead to inaccuracies. This research will trial a new surgical method, ‘Tailored Osteotomy for Knee Alignment’ (ToKa), involving custom 3D printed surgical guides and plates, to establish if it improves the accuracy of correction compared with standard HTO.

Why is this research important?

Knee osteoarthritis is common, painful, progressive and disabling, affecting approximately 1 in 5 adults over the age of 45. Whilst knee replacement is successful for late stage disease, there are few effective treatments are available for people in the “treatment gap” between symptom free and late stage arthritis. Many are left in pain, waiting considerable time before they are eligible for a knee replacement.

This research will ask patients whose surgeons have advised them to have an HTO operation to be part of a study. They will be randomly allocated to either the new personalised ToKa procedure or the standard HTO procedure, and the researchers will measure the amount of surgical correction, patient benefit and walking ability post-operation to determine which has the best improvement on pain and knee function.

How will the findings benefit patients?

When performed accurately, HTO is proven to relieve pain and improve function for early stage knee osteoarthritis. If the accuracy and repeatability of ToKa is proven to be better than standard HTO, the treatment could be more widely available in the future for the large number of people who are currently in the “treatment gap”. This could help to improve treatment outcomes for mid-stage osteoarthritis and ultimately reduce patient suffering, whilst reducing the need for other treatments.