The debridement was introduced by Magnuson in 1941. It is a procedure combining shaving, lavage, menisectomy. Remarkably the procedure does not have any scientific basis for existence; in fact it is deleterious in terms of knee biomechanics. The only reason the debridement is used in clinics is for palliative purposes as temporarily it relives the pain associated with arthritic inflammation. As of 2002 there were no double blind clinical trials in progress. Many insurance companies (for example Aetna ) currently consider the procedure experimental because there is no evidence that proves its effectiveness .
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The variation of this procedure is called arthroscopic abrasion arthroplasty, and presents an arthroscopic debridement of many tissues, in the knee joint. As with plain debridement, this is purely a palliative treatment. Statistics show that although originally 74% of patients improve, within 5 years 66% of patients have still a pain in the knee and 99% have a restriction of activity.