Arthrofibrosis after Knee Replacement – Prognosis:
Exactly when scar tissue matures is variable and remains a topic of debate. Fibrous tissue progressively matures and becomes resistant to less aggressive treatment approaches with time.
Generalized arthrofibrosis leads to more severe stiffness and inferior prognosis than localized arthrofibrosis.
The severity and duration of scar tissue and the presence of new bone formation within the soft tissue (heterotopic ossification) may affect the prognosis following treatment. But few authors indicate that there is no correlation between the interval between the initial knee replacement and revision and conclude no difference in results between early and late revision.
Traditionally, the prognosis has been considered better after revision knee replacement in patients with an identifiable cause for stiffness where the cause is corrected. But the more recent articles indicate similar prognosis after revision knee replacement in patients with and without an identifiable cause for stiffness.
Sometimes, following any type of treatment for arthrofibrosis (Physical Therapy, MUA, arthroscopic or open arthrolysis and revision knee replacement), the pain and stiffness of arthrofibrosis may recur or even worsen after a short period of improvement or rarely immediately.