The new criteria titled “Appropriate Use Criteria for Management of Osteochondritis Dissecans of the Femoral Condyle” rated restricting physical activity that produces impact or pain, as well as performing physical therapy to regain strength, mobility and function as appropriate, according to an American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons (AAOS) press release. However, bracing the knee instead of immediate surgical treatment was rated as may be appropriate, while surgical removal of the bone fragment was rated rarely appropriate.

“There is no magic bullet for this poorly understood condition,” Robert Quinn, MD, appropriate use criteria section leader for the AAOS Committee on Evidence-Based Quality and Value, said in the release. “It is challenging to find consensus about appropriate treatment because much evidence of good outcomes is inconclusive. These criteria are the best attempt to narrow down what treatment methods under what conditions have been effective so far.”

According to Quinn, the appropriate use criteria will be updated as progress is made in the treatment of osteochondritis dissecans of the femoral condyle, and physicians should use their professional discretion to determine the best course of action for patients.