From the Journals

Delaying revision knee replacement increases the odds of infection



According to a study on patients undergoing revision knee replacement, a delay of more than 24 hours between hospital admission and total knee arthroplasty (TKA) for periprosthetic fracture (PPF) led to increased odds of complications such as surgical site and urinary tract infections.

Medical Team Performing Surgical Operation in Modern Operating Room gorodenkoff/iStock/Getty Images

“Although this association is an important finding, the confounding factors that cause delay to surgery must be elucidated in non-database studies,” wrote Venkat Boddapati, MD, of Columbia University Medical Center, New York, and coauthors. The study was published in Arthroplasty Today.

To assess the best time for revision TKA after PPF of the knee, the researchers analyzed data from 484 patients who underwent another TKA from 2005 to 2016. Of those patients, 377 (78%) had expedited surgery – defined as less than or equal to 24 hours from hospital admission – and 107 (22%) had non-expedited surgery. Non-expedited patients averaged 3.2 days from admission to surgery.

After multivariate analysis, non-expedited patients had more complications overall, compared with expedited patients (odds ratio 2.35, P = .037). They also had comparative increases in surgical site infections (OR 12.87, P = .029), urinary tract infections (OR 10.46, P = .048), non-home discharge (OR 4.27, P less than .001), and blood transfusions (OR 4.53, P less than .001). The two groups saw no statistical difference in mortality.

The authors noted their study’s limitations, including an inability to assess complications beyond 30 days after surgery, which may affect tracking longer-term outcomes such as mortality. In addition, they were only able to classify surgery as expedited or non-expedited based on when the patient was admitted to the hospital, not the time since their injury. Finally, they lacked “relevant variables that may have contributed to this analysis,” including the type of fracture and the revision implants used.

Three authors reported being paid consultants for, and receiving research support from, several medical companies. The others reported no conflicts of interest.

SOURCE: Boddapati V et al. Arthroplast Today. 2019 Sep 1. doi: 10.1016/j.artd.2019.05.002.

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