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1.  Pertrochanteric fracture of the femur in the Finnish National Hospital Discharge Register: validity of procedural coding, external cause for injury and diagnosis 
Hospital discharge data is routinely collected in Finland and it is an invaluable source of information when assessing injury epidemiology as well as treatment. The database can be used when planning injury prevention and redirecting resources of the health care system. Most recently our hospital discharge register has been used to assess the incidence of surgical treatment of common fractures. This study was aimed to evaluate the coverage and accuracy of the Finnish National Hospital Discharge Register (NHDR) focusing on hip fractures. In other words, patients hospitalized for a pertrochanteric hip fracture were used to assess the validity of the NHDR.
The validity of the NHDR was assessed by comparing the data in hospital discharge register with the original patient records and radiographs in three separate hospitals; Tampere University Hospital, Hatanpää City Hospital of Tampere, and the Central Hospital of Kanta-Häme. The study analysis included 741 patients hospitalized due to pertrochanteric hip fracture between 1st January 2008 and 31st December 2010.
The diagnosis was correctly placed on 96% (95% CI: 94 to 97%) of the 741 patients when radiographs were used as golden standard. The procedural coding had coverage of 98% (95% CI: 96 to 98%) and an accuracy of 88% (95% CI: 85 to 90%). The coverage of the external cause for injury was found to be 95% (95% CI: 94 to 97%) with an accuracy of 90% (95% CI: 87 to 92%).
Our results show that the validity of the Finnish NHDR is excellent as determined by accuracy of diagnosis and both accuracy and coverage of procedural coding and external cause for injury. The database can be used to assess injury epidemiology and changes in surgical treatment protocols.
PMCID: PMC4026595  PMID: 24655318
2.  Trends in the surgical treatment of proximal humeral fractures – a nationwide 23-year study in Finland 
Proximal humeral fractures are common osteoporotic fractures. Most proximal humeral fractures are treated non-surgically, although surgical treatment has gained popularity. The purpose of this study was to determine changes in the surgical treatment of proximal humeral fractures in Finland between 1987 and 2009.
The study covered the entire adult (>19 y) population in Finland over the 23-year period from 1st of January 1987 to 31st of December 2009. We assessed the number and incidence of surgically treated proximal humeral fractures in each year of observation and recorded the type of surgery used. The cohort study was based on data from Finnish National Hospital Discharge Register.
During the 23-year study period, a total of 10,560 surgical operations for proximal humeral fractures were performed in Finland. The overall incidence of these operations nearly quadrupled between 1987 and 2009. After the year 2002, the number of patients treated with plating increased.
An increase in the incidence of the surgical treatment of proximal humeral fractures was seen in Finland in 1987–2009. Fracture plating became increasingly popular since 2002. As optimal indications for each surgical treatment modality in the treatment of proximal humeral fractures are not known, critical evaluation of each individual treatment method is needed.
PMCID: PMC3537526  PMID: 23273247
3.  Sports activity and the use of cigarettes and snus among young males in Finland in 1999-2010 
BMC Public Health  2012;12:230.
Studies of the relationship between sports activity and smoking among adolescents and young adults report contradictory results. We examined the association between sports activity (intensity and type of sport) and the current use of snus (Swedish snuff), cigarette smoking, and the combined use of cigarettes and snus (dual use) among young males in Finland.
Data were collected from 16,746 male conscripts who completed a survey during the first days of their conscription during the years 1999-2010 (median age 19 years, response rate 95%). Main outcome measures were self-reported daily/occasional use of snus, cigarette smoking, and dual use. The association between sports activity, type of sport, and several sociodemographic background variables was assessed using logistic regression analysis.
Over the study period (1999-2010), the prevalence of cigarette smoking decreased from 42% to 34%, while snus use increased from 5% to 12%, and dual use increased from 7% to 13% (p < 0.001). Compared with no physical activity, regular competitive sports activity (defined as high-intensity sports activity) was positively associated with use of snus (odds ratio [OR] 10.2; 95% confidence interval [CI]: 7.8-13.5) and negatively with cigarette smoking (OR 0.2; 95% CI: 0.1-0.3). When stratified by type of sport in multivariate models, ice hockey was most strongly associated with snus use (OR 1.6; 95% CI: 1.4-1.9) and dual use (OR 2.0; 95% CI 1.8-2.3) compared with those not playing ice-hockey, followed by other team sports for snus use (OR 1.5; 95% CI: 1.3-1.8) and dual use (OR 1.8; 95% CI: 1.6-2.0) compared with those not participating in other team-sports.
Our results show a clear association between snus use and intensity and type of training. Team sports were associated with increased use of snus and dual use compared with no participation in team sports. These findings should be acknowledged when planning and implementing preventive strategies.
PMCID: PMC3325877  PMID: 22439614
Young people/youth; Tobacco use; Snus; Smoking; Sports; Physical activity
4.  Orthotic insoles do not prevent physical stress-induced low back pain 
European Spine Journal  2010;20(1):100-104.
Orthotic insoles are suggested to prevent low back pain. This randomized controlled study assessed if customised orthotic insoles prevent low back pain. Healthy military conscripts (n = 228; mean age 19 years, range 18–29) were randomly assigned to use either customised orthotic insoles (treatment group, n = 73) or nothing (control group, n = 147). The main outcome measure was low back pain requiring a physician visit and resulting in minimum 1 day suspension from military duty. Twenty-four (33%) treated subjects and 42 (27%) control subjects were suspended from duty due to low back pain (p = 0.37; risk difference 4.3%; 95% CI: −8.7 to 17.3%). Mean suspension duration was 2 days (range 1–7) in both groups. Four (5%) treated subjects and eight (5%) control subjects were released from duty due to persistent low back pain (p = 0.92; risk difference 0%; 95% CI: −6 to 6%). Use of orthotic insoles is therefore not recommended to prevent physical stress-related low back pain.
PMCID: PMC3036013  PMID: 20602123
Prevention; Lower back pain; rct
5.  Low physical fitness is a strong predictor of health problems among young men: a follow-up study of 1411 male conscripts 
BMC Public Health  2011;11:590.
Military service in Finland is compulsory for male citizens and annually about 90% of 19-year-old men enter into the service. Approximately 15% of them are discharged due to medical reasons constituting a group of young men who are at risk of being marginalised in society. The purpose of the study was to evaluate predictive associations between medical discharge from the compulsory military service and various intrinsic risk factors, including socio-economic, health, health behavior, and physical fitness outcomes.
We followed four successive cohorts of conscripts who formed a representative sample of Finnish young men (18-28 years old, median age 19 yrs) for 6 months. To exclude injuries and illnesses originating before the onset of service, conscripts discharged from the service at the medical screenings during the 2-week run-in period were excluded from the analyses. Data regarding medical discharge were charted from computerised patient records. Predictive associations between medical discharge and intrinsic risk factors were examined using multivariate Cox's proportional hazard models.
Of 1411 participants, 9.4% (n = 133) were discharged prematurely for medical reasons, mainly musculoskeletal (44%, n = 59) and mental and behavioral (29%, n = 39) disorders. Low levels of physical fitness assessed with a 12-min running test (hazard ratio [HR] 3.3; 95% confidence interval [CI]: 1.7-6.4), poor school success (HR 4.6; 95% CI: 2.0-11.0), poor self-assessed health (HR 2.8; 95% CI: 1.6-5.2), and not belonging to a sports club (HR 4.9; 95% CI: 1.2-11.6) were most strongly associated with medical discharge in a graded manner. The present results highlight the need for an improved pre-enlistment examination and provide a new means of identifying young persons with a high risk for discharge.
The majority of the observed risk factors are modifiable. Thus preventive measures and programs could be implemented. The findings suggest that increasing both aerobic and muscular fitness is a desirable goal in a pre-training program before entering military service. Attention to appropriate waist circumference and strategies addressing psychological well-being may strengthen the preventive program. Optimally the effectiveness of these programs should be tested in randomized controlled intervention studies.
PMCID: PMC3166930  PMID: 21787401
epidemiology; exercise; fitness testing; sporting injuries
6.  Comparison of 1.5T and 3T MRI scanners in evaluation of acute bone stress in the foot 
Bone stress injuries are common in athletes and military recruits. Only a minority of bone stress changes are available on plain radiographs. Acute bone stress is often visible on MRI as bone marrow edema, which is also seen in many other disease processes such as malignancies, inflammatory conditions and infections. The purpose of this study was to investigate the ability of radiographs, 1.5T and 3T MRI to identify acute bone marrow changes in the foot.
Ten patients with 12 stress fractures seen on plain radiographs underwent MRI using 1.5T and 3T scanners. T1 FSE and STIR axial, sagittal, and coronal view sequences were obtained. Two musculoskeletal radiologists interpreted the images independently and by consensus in case of disagreement.
Of the 63 acute bone stress changes seen on 3T images, 61 were also seen on 1.5T images. The sensitivity of 1.5T MRI was 97% (95% CI: 89%-99%) compared with 3T. The 3T MRI images where, therefore, at least equally sensitive to 1.5T scanners in detection of bone marrow edema. On T1-weighted sequences, 3T images were slightly superior to 1.5T images in visualizing the demarcation of the edema and bone trabeculae. The kappa-value for inter-observer variability was 0.86 in the MRI indicating substantial interobserver agreement.
Owing to slightly better resolution of 3T images, edema characterization is easier, which might aid in the differential diagnosis of the bone marrow edema. There was, however, no noteworthy difference in the sensitivity of the 1.5T and 3T images to bone marrow edema. Routine identification of acute bone stress changes and suspected stress injuries can, therefore, be made with 1.5T field strength.
PMCID: PMC3121660  PMID: 21645348
7.  Mortality and cause of death in hip fracture patients aged 65 or older - a population-based study 
The high mortality of hip fracture patients is well documented, but sex- and cause-specific mortality after hip fracture has not been extensively studied. The purpose of the present study was to evaluate mortality and cause of death in patients after hip fracture surgery and to compare their mortality and cause of death to those in the general population.
Records of 428 consecutive hip fracture patients were collected on a population-basis and data on the general population comprising all Finns 65 years of age or older were collected on a cohort-basis. Cause of death was classified as follows: malignant neoplasms, dementia, circulatory disease, respiratory disease, digestive system disease, and other.
Mean follow-up was 3.7 years (range 0-9 years). Overall 1-year postoperative mortality was 27.3% and mortality after hip fracture at the end of the follow-up was 79.0%. During the follow-up, age-adjusted mortality after hip fracture surgery was higher in men than in women with hazard ratio (HR) 1.55 and 95% confidence interval (95% CI) 1.21-2.00. Among hip surgery patients, the most common causes of death were circulatory diseases, followed by dementia and Alzheimer's disease. After hip fracture, men were more likely than women to die from respiratory disease, malignant neoplasm, and circulatory disease. During the follow-up, all-cause age- and sex-standardized mortality after hip fracture was 3-fold higher than that of the general population and included every cause-of-death category.
During the study period, the risk of mortality in hip fracture patients was 3-fold higher than that in the general population and included every major cause of death.
PMCID: PMC3118151  PMID: 21599967
8.  Neuromuscular training with injury prevention counselling to decrease the risk of acute musculoskeletal injury in young men during military service: a population-based, randomised study 
BMC Medicine  2011;9:35.
The rapidly increasing number of activity-induced musculoskeletal injuries among adolescents and young adults is currently a true public health burden. The objective of this study was to investigate whether a neuromuscular training programme with injury prevention counselling is effective in preventing acute musculoskeletal injuries in young men during military service.
The trial design was a population-based, randomised study. Two successive cohorts of male conscripts in four companies of one brigade in the Finnish Defence Forces were first followed prospectively for one 6-month term to determine the baseline incidence of injury. After this period, two new successive cohorts in the same four companies were randomised into two groups and followed prospectively for 6 months. Military service is compulsory for about 90% of 19-year-old Finnish men annually, who comprised the cohort in this study. This randomised, controlled trial included 968 conscripts comprising 501 conscripts in the intervention group and 467 conscripts in the control group. A neuromuscular training programme was used to enhance conscripts' motor skills and body control, and an educational injury prevention programme was used to increase knowledge and awareness of acute musculoskeletal injuries. The main outcome measures were acute injuries of the lower and upper limbs.
In the intervention groups, the risk for acute ankle injury decreased significantly compared to control groups (adjusted hazards ratio (HR) = 0.34, 95% confidence interval (95% CI) = 0.15 to 0.78, P = 0.011). This risk decline was observed in conscripts with low as well as moderate to high baseline fitness levels. In the latter group of conscripts, the risk of upper-extremity injuries also decreased significantly (adjusted HR = 0.37, 95% CI 0.14 to 0.99, P = 0.047). In addition, the intervention groups tended to have less time loss due to injuries (adjusted HR = 0.55, 95% CI 0.29 to 1.04).
A neuromuscular training and injury prevention counselling programme was effective in preventing acute ankle and upper-extremity injuries in young male army conscripts. A similar programme could be useful for all young individuals by initiating a regular exercise routine.
Trial registration identifier number NCT00595816.
PMCID: PMC3084158  PMID: 21481230
9.  Recovery of brachial plexus lesions resulting from heavy backpack use: A follow-up case series 
Brachial plexus lesions as a consequence of carrying a heavy backpack have been reported, but the typical clinical course and long-term consequences are not clear. Here we evaluated the clinical course and pattern of recovery of backpack palsy (BPP) in a large series of patients.
Thirty-eight consecutive patients with idiopathic BPP were identified from our population of 193,450 Finnish conscripts by means of computerised register. A physiotherapist provided instructions for proper hand use and rehabilitative exercises at disease onset. The patients were followed up for 2 to 8 years from the diagnosis. We also searched for genetic markers of hereditary neuropathy with pressure palsies. Mann-Whitney U-test was used to analyze continuous data. The Fischer's exact test was used to assess two-way tables.
Eighty percent of the patients recovered totally within 9 months after the onset of weakness. Prolonged symptoms occurred in 15% of the patients, but daily activities were not affected. The weight of the carried load at the symptom onset significantly affected the severity of the muscle strength loss in the physiotherapeutic testing at the follow-up. The initial electromyography did not predict recovery. Genetic testing did not reveal de novo hereditary neuropathy with pressure palsies.
The prognosis of BPP is favorable in the vast majority of cases. Electromyography is useful for diagnosis. To prevent brachial plexus lesions, backpack loads greater than 40 kg should be avoided.
PMCID: PMC3076297  PMID: 21429232
peripheral nerve trauma; peripheral neuropathy; HNPP
10.  Bone Stress Injuries Are Common in Female Military Trainees: A Preliminary Study 
Although bone stress injuries are common in male military trainees, it is not known how common they are in female trainees. It also is unclear whether asymptomatic bone stress injuries heal if intensive training is continued. We prospectively followed 10 female trainees of a military Reserve Officer Course. The subjects underwent clinical and MRI examinations of the pelvis, thighs, and lower legs at the beginning, once during, and at the end of their 3-month course. We identified two to five injuries in every female trainee, all of whom already had the injuries at the beginning of the officer course. None of these injuries increased their severity despite vigorous training. Two-thirds were asymptomatic and low grade. Femoral and tibial shafts were the most common locations. Higher-grade injuries were more likely symptomatic, but regardless of the MRI findings, female trainees expressed only mild to moderate symptoms. Asymptomatic, low-grade bone stress injuries of the femoral and tibial shaft are common in female recruits undergoing heavy physical training. Because these injuries seem to remain constant or even disappear despite continued heavy physical activity, we do not recommend routine screening of asymptomatic trainees. As some bone stress fractures may have severe consequences (eg, in the femoral neck), symptomatic bone stress injuries should be examined and treated.
PMCID: PMC2758974  PMID: 19384560
11.  Genetic predisposition for femoral neck stress fractures in military conscripts 
BMC Genetics  2010;11:95.
Stress fractures are a significant problem among athletes and soldiers and may result in devastating complications or even permanent handicap. Genetic factors may increase the risk, but no major susceptibility genes have been identified. The purpose of this study was to search for possible genetic factors predisposing military conscripts to femoral neck stress fractures.
Eight genes involved in bone metabolism or pathology (COL1A1, COL1A2, OPG, ESR1, VDR, CTR, LRP5, IL-6) were examined in 72 military conscripts with a femoral neck stress fracture and 120 controls. The risk of femoral neck stress fracture was significantly higher in subjects with low weight and body mass index (BMI). An interaction between the CTR (rs1801197) minor allele C and the VDR C-A haplotype was observed, and subjects lacking the C allele in CTR and/or the C-A haplotype in VDR had a 3-fold higher risk of stress fracture than subjects carrying both (OR = 3.22, 95% CI 1.38-7.49, p = 0.007). In addition, the LRP5 haplotype A-G-G-C alone and in combination with the VDR haplotype C-A was associated with stress fractures through reduced body weight and BMI.
Our findings suggest that genetic factors play a role in the development of stress fractures in individuals subjected to heavy exercise and mechanical loading. The present results can be applied to the design of future studies that will further elucidate the genetics of stress fractures.
PMCID: PMC2975640  PMID: 20961463
12.  Aetiology and risk factors of musculoskeletal disorders in physically active conscripts: a follow-up study in the Finnish Defence Forces 
Musculoskeletal disorders (MSDs) are the main reason for morbidity during military training. MSDs commonly result in functional impairment leading to premature discharge from military service and disabilities requiring long-term rehabilitation. The purpose of the study was to examine associations between various risk factors and MSDs with special attention to the physical fitness of the conscripts.
Two successive cohorts of 18 to 28-year-old male conscripts (N = 944, median age 19) were followed for six months. MSDs, including overuse and acute injuries, treated at the garrison clinic were identified and analysed. Associations between MSDs and risk factors were examined by multivariate Cox's proportional hazard models.
During the six-month follow-up of two successive cohorts there were 1629 MSDs and 2879 health clinic visits due to MSDs in 944 persons. The event-based incidence rate for MSD was 10.5 (95% confidence interval (CI): 10.0-11.1) per 1000 person-days. Most MSDs were in the lower extremities (65%) followed by the back (18%). The strongest baseline factors associated with MSDs were poor result in the combined outcome of a 12-minute running test and back lift test (hazard ratio (HR) 2.9; 95% CI: 1.9-4.6), high waist circumference (HR 1.7; 95% CI: 1.3-2.2), high body mass index (HR 1.8; 95% CI: 1.3-2.4), poor result in a 12-minute running test (HR 1.6; 95% CI: 1.2-2.2), earlier musculoskeletal symptoms (HR 1.7; 95% CI: 1.3-2.1) and poor school success (educational level and grades combined; HR 2.0; 95% CI: 1.3-3.0). In addition, risk factors of long-term MSDs (≥10 service days lost due to one or several MSDs) were analysed: poor result in a 12-minute running test, earlier musculoskeletal symptoms, high waist circumference, high body mass index, not belonging to a sports club and poor result in the combined outcome of the 12-minute running test and standing long jump test were strongly associated with long-term MSDs.
The majority of the observed risk factors are modifiable and favourable for future interventions. An appropriate intervention based on the present study would improve both aerobic and muscular fitness prior to conscript training. Attention to appropriate waist circumference and body mass index would strengthen the intervention. Effective results from well-planned randomised controlled studies are needed before initiating large-scale prevention programmes in a military environment.
PMCID: PMC2911403  PMID: 20602765
13.  Tissue Restoration After Implantation of Polyglycolide, Polydioxanone, Polylevolactide, and Metallic Pins in Cortical Bone: An Experimental Study in Rabbits 
Calcified Tissue International  2010;87(1):90-98.
We performed qualitative and histoquantitative investigations of tissue restoration after implanting polyglycolide (PGA), polydioxanone (PDS), polylevolactide (PLLA), and stainless steel pins in the intramedullary canal of rabbit femurs. The effect of bioabsorbable devices on healing of a cortical bone defect was also assessed. The cortical bone defect was created in the right femur of 80 rabbits. Bioabsorbable and metallic pins in 60 and two metallic pins alone were implanted in 20 intramedullary canals; 80 left femurs served as intact controls. Follow-up times were 3, 6, 12, 24, and 52 weeks. At all time points, collagenous connective tissue, including bone trabeculae, surrounded the implant at the tissue–implant interface, replacing hematopoiesis and fat of the intramedullary canal. The groups did not differ in the area and trabecular bone area fraction of the resulting callus. Residual fragments of PGA and PDS were observed at 24 weeks, and complete degradation occurred within 52 weeks. PGA, PDS, PLLA, and metallic implants induced a bony and fibrous walling-off response in the intramedullary cavity. No inflammation was observed. Complete tissue restoration did not occur within the follow-up, even after complete degradation of PGA and PDS, which had shorter degradation times than PLLA. The cortical bone healing effect was not different between bioabsorbable pins and metallic wires. Thus, these polymers had no specific osteostimulatory or osteoinhibitory properties compared to stainless steel. Within the follow-up period, there were no significant differences in biocompatibility between the implants and no adverse inflammatory foreign-body reactions.
PMCID: PMC2887933  PMID: 20495791
Tissue restoration; Tissue response; Bioabsorbable implant; Biodegradation; Biocompatibility; Bone fixation device
14.  Excision of Painful Bipartite Patella: Good Long-term Outcome in Young Adults 
Excision of the accessory bipartite fragment is widely used, but its long-term outcome is not known. We evaluated the outcome after surgical excision of a symptomatic accessory bipartite or multipartite patella fragment in young adult men performing their compulsory military service and determined the incidence of painful bipartite patellae in this group of skeletally mature adults. We followed 25 of 32 patients for a minimum of 10 years (mean, 15 years; range, 10–22 years). The incidence of painful, surgically treated bipartite patella was 9.2 per 100,000 recruits. Patients’ median age at surgery was 20 years. There were 19 superolateral and six lateral bipartite fragments. Other radiographic findings were rare. At followup, the Kujala score mean was 95 points (range, 75–100 points), and osteoarthrotic changes (Kellgren-Lawrence Grade 1) were seen in two knees. No reoperations related to bipartite patella occurred during the followup. Symptomatic bipartite patella is rare and does not seem primarily associated with anatomic deviations, but when incapacitating pain persists despite nonoperative treatment, surgical excision seems to yield reasonable functional outcome and quick recovery with no apparent adverse sequelae. Our data suggest there is no reason to avoid this technically undemanding procedure for treating persistent symptoms of bipartite patella in young adults.
Level of Evidence: Level IV, therapeutic study. See the Guidelines for Authors for a complete description of levels of evidence.
PMCID: PMC2565028  PMID: 18607662
15.  Musculoskeletal disorders in physically active conscripts: a one-year follow-up study in the Finnish Defence Forces 
Musculoskeletal disorders (MSDs) are an important cause for morbidity in military service. They result in disabilities needing long-term rehabilitation and functional impairment leading to premature discharge from military service. The purpose of the study was to investigate the incidence and nature of MSDs in Finnish conscripts.
Two successive arrivals of 18–28-yr-old male conscripts (N = 955, median age 19) were followed for six months. MSDs, including overuse and acute injuries, treated at the garrison clinic were identified and analysed.
During the 12-month study period there were 437 outpatient clinic visits in 955 persons. The occurrence rate was 33% during 6-month service while the event-based incidence was 3.3 per 1000 person-days. Occurrence peaked in summer months. The most common types of MSDs were low back pain (LBP, 20%), lower limb overuse injuries (16%) and sprains or strains (13%). Disorders mostly occurred in combat training in combat gear (40%) and during marching on foot or bicycle (28%). Overuse-related MSDs were more prevalent (66%) than traumatic ones (34%). One-third (34%) of the MSDs were recurrent and 66% were new ones. Disorders of the back and the knee were most frequently recurrent conditions (44% for both). Fractures, knee ligament ruptures, dislocations and muscle strains accounted for the highest number of service days lost. Twenty-four (2.5%) out of 955 conscripts were prematurely discharged due to MSDs.
Preventive measures during military service should be targeted at decreasing low back pain and lower limb overuse injuries, because these inflict the largest burden of MSDs and tend to have a chronic nature.
PMCID: PMC2724399  PMID: 19624829
16.  Ligament Reconstruction versus Distal Realignment for Patellar Dislocation 
Recently, medial patellofemoral ligament reconstruction has been emphasized for the treatment of patellar dislocation. This study compared the results of medial patellofemoral ligament reconstruction by adductor magnus tenodesis with distal patellar realignment in patients with recurrent patellar dislocation. Additionally, the development of patellofemoral osteoarthrosis was compared for these two procedures at a median 10-year followup. Between 1994 and 2000, 47 consecutive patients were treated for recurrent patellar dislocation by adductor magnus tenodesis (18 knees) or Roux-Goldthwait procedure (29 knees). Redislocations, subjective symptoms, and functional outcomes were evaluated. Magnetic resonance imaging was performed at followup. The incidence of patellar redislocation after surgery was 7% in the adductor magnus group and 14% in the Roux-Goldthwait group. Median Kujala scores were 88 for the adductor magnus group and 86 for the Roux-Goldthwait group. Magnetic resonance imaging revealed patellofemoral articular cartilage lesions in 22 knees (73.3%) at followup, including 14 (46.6%) with full-thickness cartilage loss. Radiographs revealed patellofemoral osteoarthritis in five patients in the Roux-Goldthwait group and in none of the patients in the adductor magnus group. Adductor magnus tenodesis is a reliable method to treat recurrent patellar dislocation. The medial patellofemoral ligament reconstruction seems to reduce the risk of osteoarthrosis compared with distal realignment surgery.
Level of Evidence: Level III, therapeutic study. See the Guidelines for Authors for a complete description of levels of evidence.
PMCID: PMC2384023  PMID: 18347890
17.  Incidence and trends of low back pain hospitalisation during military service – An analysis of 387,070 Finnish young males 
There is evidence that low back pain (LBP) during young adulthood and military service predicts LBP later in life. The purpose of this study was to investigate the incidence and trends of LBP hospitalisation among Finnish military conscripts.
All male conscripts performing their compulsory military service during 1990–2002 were included in the study population. Altogether 387,070 military conscripts were followed throughout their six-to-twelve-month service period. Data on LBP hospitalisations were obtained from the National Hospital Discharge Register.
Altogether 7,240 LBP hospitalisations were identified among 5,061 (1.3%) male conscripts during the study period. The event-based incidence of LBP hospitalisation was 27.0 (95% confidence interval (CI): 25.7–28.2). In most cases, the diagnosis was unspecified LBP (n = 5,141, 71%) followed by lumbar disc disorders (n = 2,069, 29%). Hospitalisation incidence due to unspecified LBP was 19.1 per 1,000 person-years (95% CI: 18.3 to 20.4), and 7.8 per 1,000 person-years (95% CI: 6.7 to 8.3) due to lumbar disc disorders. The incidence of unspecified LBP remained unaltered, while hospitalisation due to lumbar disc disorders declined from 1993 onwards.
Although conscripts accepted into military training pass physician-performed examinations as healthy, young adults, LBP hospitalisation causes significant morbidity during military service.
PMCID: PMC2637829  PMID: 19152697
18.  Low back pain and its risk indicators: a survey of 7,040 Finnish male conscripts 
European Spine Journal  2007;17(1):64-69.
Studies describing risk indicators of low back pain (LBP) have focused on adults, although the roots of LBP lie in adolescence and early adulthood. The objective of the present study was to assess the lifetime occurrence and risk indicators of LBP in young adult males. The survey sample comprised 7,333 male conscripts (median age 19), of which 7,040 (96%) answered a questionnaire during the first days of their conscription. The outcome was lifetime LBP prompting at least one visit to a physician. Associations between 18 background variables and LBP were analysed by logistic regression. Altogether 894 (12.7%) respondents reported LBP. Health status was a strong determinant of LBP. The strongest individual risk indicators for LBP were having two or more other than back-related diseases diagnosed by a physician during past year (OR 2.0; 95% CI 1.6–2.5), below-average self-perceived health (OR 1.6; 95% CI 1.3–2.0) and use of smokeless tobacco (OR 1.4; 95% CI 1.2–1.7). Socioeconomic status was not associated with LBP and health behaviours only weakly. The strongest risk indicators for LBP were related to health problems. Of the socioeconomic background factors, none were associated with LBP. It is evident that LBP is associated with other health problems as well, indicating that its background may be multifactorial. This presents challenges for prevention programme planning and implementation. Longitudinal cohort studies are urgently needed to enhance understanding of adolescent risk indicators of LBP.
PMCID: PMC2365533  PMID: 17874146
Low back pain; Health behaviour; Risk indicators; Epidemiology
19.  One Screening Magnetic Resonance Imaging Sequence in Evaluation of Chondral and Meniscal Lesions of the Knee − A Pilot Study 
This prospective study aimed to evaluate if chondral and meniscal lesions in symptomatic knees of osteoarthritis patients can be reliably identified using only one sagittal dual-echo MRI (Magnetic Resonance Imaging) sequence. MRI was performed on 13 patients after knee arthroscopy due to knee pain and clinically suspected osteoarthritis using a 1.5-Tesla scanner with knee coil and a sagittal dual-echo turbo spin-echo PD (Proton Density)- and T2-weighted sequence. The MRI and arthroscopic findings were then compared. Of 65 articular surfaces, 47 were damaged. For articular cartilage lesions, the overall sensitivity of MRI was 46.8%, specificity 72.2%, and diagnostic accuracy 53.9%, and for meniscal ruptures 81.2%, 66.7%, and 73.1%, respectively. The present study showed that the reliability of screening MRI of knees using only one sagittal dual-echo sequence does not suffice for diagnosis of chondral or meniscal lesions, and should therefore not replace routine knee MRI or diagnostic arthroscopy.
PMCID: PMC2685049  PMID: 19461925
Osteoarthritis; knee; articular cartilage; MRI; arthroscopy.
20.  Tyrosine-derived polycarbonate membrane in treating mandibular bone defects. An experimental study 
This study was designed to evaluate the suitability of a novel bioabsorbable material in treating bone defects. A poly(desaminotyrosyl-tyrosine-ethyl ester carbonate) (PDTE carbonate) membrane (thickness 0.2–0.3 mm) was implanted into the mandibular angle of 20 New Zealand White rabbits to cover a through-and-through defect (12×6 mm). In group 1, the defects were left unfilled but covered with membrane and in group 2 the defects were filled with bioactive glass mesh and covered with membrane, too. Controls were left uncovered and unfilled. The animals were followed for 6, 12, 24 and 52 weeks, respectively. The material was evaluated by qualitative analysis of histological reactions and newly formed bone.
We found that PDTE carbonate elicited a modest foreign body reaction in the tissues, which was uniform throughout the study. New bone formation was seen in all samples after six weeks. Group 1 had more new bone formation until 24 weeks and after this the difference settled. Based on findings of this study it was concluded that PDTE carbonate membranes have good biocompatibility and are sufficient to enhance bone growth without additional supportive matrix.
PMCID: PMC1664657  PMID: 16971331
poly(desaminotyrosyl-tyrosine-ethyl ester carbonate); bioabsorbable membrane; rabbit; mandible; reconstruction; guided bone regeneration
21.  Monitoring and analysis of dynamic growth of human embryonic stem cells: comparison of automated instrumentation and conventional culturing methods 
Human embryonic stem cells (hESCs) are a potential source of cells for use in regenerative medicine. Automation of culturing, monitoring and analysis is crucial for fast and reliable optimization of hESC culturing methods. Continuous monitoring of living cell cultures can reveal more information and is faster than using laborious traditional methods such as microscopic evaluation, immunohistochemistry and flow cytometry.
We analyzed the growth dynamics of two hESC lines HS237 and HS293 in a conventional culture medium containing serum replacement and a xeno-free X-vivo 10 medium. We used a new automated culture platform utilizing machine vision technology, which enables automatic observation, recording and analysis of intact living cells. We validated the results using flow cytometry for cell counting and characterization.
In our analyses, hESC colony growth could be continuously monitored and the proportion of undifferentiated cells automatically analyzed. No labeling was needed and we could, for the first time, perform detailed follow up of live, undisturbed cell colonies, and record all the events in the culture. The growth rate of the hESCs cultured in X-vivo 10 medium was significantly lower and a larger proportion of the cells were differentiated.
The new automated system enables rapid and reliable analysis of undifferentiated growth dynamics of hESCs. We demonstrate the effectiveness of the system by comparing hESC growth in different culture conditions.
PMCID: PMC1854905  PMID: 17428350
22.  Molecularly defined adult-type hypolactasia among working age people with reference to milk consumption and gastrointestinal symptoms 
AIM: To study milk consumption and subjective milk-related symptoms in adults genotyped for adult-type hypolactasia.
METHODS: A total of 1900 Finnish adults were genotyped for the C/T-13910 variant of adult-type hypolactasia and filled in a structured questionnaire concerning milk consumption and gastrointestinal problems.
RESULTS: The C/C-13910 genotype of adult-type hypolactasia was present in 18% of the study population. The prevalence of the C/C-13910 genotype was higher among subjects who were undergoing investigations because of abdominal symptoms (24%, P < 0.05). Those with the C/C-13910 genotype drank less milk than subjects with either the C/T-13910 or the T/T-13910 genotype of lactase persistence (18% vs 38%; 18% vs 36%, P < 0.01). Subjects with the C/C-13910 genotype had experienced more gastrointestinal symptoms (84%) during the preceding three-month period than those with the C/T-13910 (79%, P < 0.05) or the T/T-13910 genotype (78 %, P < 0.05). Only 9% (29/338) of the subjects with the C/C-13910 genotype consumed milk and reported no symptoms from it.
CONCLUSION: Gastrointestinal symptoms are more common among adults with the C/C-13910 genotype of adult-type hypolactasia than in those with genotypes of lactase persistence.
PMCID: PMC4146998  PMID: 17451204
Lactase persistence; Lactose malabsorption; C/T-13910 genotype; Abdominal symptoms; Milk consumption

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