Wear and tear on the knee joints often result in lost cartilage and osteoarthritis. When the knee joint has wear and tear that is uneven, it may be possible to shift the alignment of the bones to preserve cartilage and relieve pain. One orthopedic surgery that is used for realigning the lower portion of the knee joint is a high tibial osteotomy, or HTO. Dr. Steven Struhl at Shoulders & Knees offers HTO, or high tibial osteotomy, at our clinics in NYC and Westchester.

The tibia, or shin bone, is attached to the femur, or thigh bone, with ligaments and cartilage between the ends of each bone. When the alignment of the tibia is uncentered, it can cause uneven wear of the cartilage. Those who are have bowed legs or knees from genetics or loss of bone may have severe wear and tear on one side (inside) of the joints. This condition can also impact the success of other knee procedures if it will produce uneven wear on the joint.

How HTO Is Performed

In a high tibial osteotomy (HTO), an incision to the top of the tibia is used to reposition the alignment. Once the tibia alignment is straightened or centered, screws and plates are used to keep the bone in place. A bone graft may be used to improve and quicken the healing of the bone after the surgery.

For many patients with bowed legs, HTO can relieve uneven cartilage and joint wear to reduce pain and improve mobility. This is often recommended for patients too young for joint replacement surgery or those wanting to delay or avoid joint replacement.

HTO, or high tibial osteotomy, can be an alternative to joint replacement surgery or is used to increase the success of other types of knee joint treatments. To learn more about HTO, schedule a consultation with Dr. Struhl, one of New York’s top knee orthopedic surgeons.