HIV, HBV, and HCV Increase Risks After Joint Replacement

After joint replacement the risk of infection and other complications increase in patients with hepatitis and HIV within 30 to 90 days.


As patients with HIV, hepatitis B (HBV), and hepatitis C (HCV) live longer, more active lives with the help of antiviral treatments, they are now more often having joint replacement surgeries. But HIV, HBV, and HCV can increase the risk of postoperative complications, say researchers from Duke University in North Carolina.

The researchers studied 16,338 patients in 4 cohorts: those with HIV, HBV, HCV, and HIV plus HBV or HCV. They evaluated the patients at 30 days, 90 days, and 2 years after total joint arthroplasty (TJA), comparing their progress with that of a control group.

Patients with HBV and HCV were at risk of both acute and long-term medical and surgical complications. At 90 days and 2 years, the participants had increased risk of pneumonia, sepsis, joint infection, and revision surgery. They also had a greater risk of complications than did patients with HIV, especially for infection, within the first 90 days postsurgery.

Notably, after TJA, patients with HCV had increased risk of acute kidney injury, sepsis, and transfusion at 30 and 90 days. After hip replacement, patients with HBV had a higher risk of acute kidney injury, pneumonia, and transfusion at 30 and 90 days.

Only 364 patients in the study had both HIV and HBV or HBC, but they did have a greater risk of transfusion at 30 and 90 days following both knee and hip surgery.

Following total hip arthroplasty, patients with HIV were more at risk for deep vein thrombosis and transfusion rather than infection. The lower incidence of infection is likely to be related to effective highly active antiretroviral therapy, the researchers say. HIV patients also were more likely to have mechanical complications, such as loosening, periprosthetic fracture, and revision at 90 days, but not at 2 years. Patients with HIV who underwent total knee arthroplasty (TKA) had a higher risk of death at 30 days and medical complications at 90 days. At 2 years, they had a higher risk of periprosthetic joint infection, irrigation and debridement, and revision. The researchers say the higher incidence of mechanical complications can be explained by the younger, more active, and healthy HIV patients in the cohort—the majority were aged younger than 65 years. They also emphasize that the only risk of infection following TJA in their study was 2 years after TKA.

The researchers suggest that their findings could help prompt future guidelines supporting routine screening prior to elective TJA.

Kildow BJ, Politzer CS, DiLallo M, Bolognesi MP, Seyler TM. J Arthroplasty. 2018;33(suppl 7):S86-S92.

doi: 10.1016/j.arth.2017.10.061.

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