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News Americas

Many Middle Eastern patients knee for prayer and sit at social gatherings every day. This has to be taken into consideration when performing surgery on a patient from this region. (Photo:Zurijeta/Shutterstock)
May 1, 2012 | News Americas

Knee surgery: Difference between Middle Eastern and Western patients

by Surgical Tribune

SAN FRANCISCO, USA: At the annual meeting of the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons in San Francisco, Dubai surgeons have pointed out differences in knee joints and replacement surgery between Middle Eastern/Asian and Western patients. According to the experts, there is a difference in the anatomies of the knee joint between people from the East and from the West.

Anatomical differences must be taken into consideration when surgeons operate on patients from the Middle East, said Dr Samih Tarabichi, Director of the Total Joint Replacement Center of Excellence at the American Hospital Dubai, in the presentation “Things you should know about the Asian knee before doing total knee replacement”. Examining the specific differences in regional knee types, Tarabichi stressed his extensive personal experience, having performed over 2,000 knee surgeries in the US and more than 5,000 in the Middle East.

“The Middle Eastern knee is different to the joint I worked on in the US,” he said. “There is some anatomical difference in the shape and angle of the tibia and femur and with the high prevalence of obesity, osteoporosis and diabetes among patients in the Middle East, we tend to see more advanced knee problems by the time we see the patient.”

According to Tarabichi, patients in the Middle East are often heavy and doctors have to be very gentle with the surgical treatment, taking anatomical differences into account.

The specific demands of knee surgery patients in the region, based on the cultural requirements of kneeling for prayer and sitting at social gatherings, were also touched upon in the presentation, as reported on the hospital’s website.

Tarabichi, who is also editor of the Middle East edition of the Journal of Bone and Joint Surgery, has patented two devices in the US that are currently used in joint surgery.

The American Hospital Dubai is an acute care, general medical/surgical hospital whose mission is “to provide high quality American standard health care that meets the needs and exceeds the expectations of the people of Dubai, the UAE and the surrounding Gulf states.” It was “planned, designed, built and equipped to meet American standards of healthcare.”

The annual meeting of the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons is attended by leading knee surgeons from the US and elsewhere, and includes presentations and discussion sessions, as well as live surgical procedures.

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