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1.  Fast-track pathway for reduction of dislocated hip arthroplasty reduces surgical delay and length of stay 
Acta Orthopaedica  2015;86(3):335-338.
Background and purpose
Dislocation is one of the most common complications following hip arthroplasty. Delay until reduction leads to pain for the patient, and may increase the risk of complications. We investigated the safety aspect of a fast-track pathway for dislocated hip arthroplasties and evaluated its effect on surgical delay and length of stay (LOS).
Patients and methods
402 consecutive and unselected dislocations (253 patients) were admitted at our institution between May 10, 2010 and September 31, 2013. The fast-track pathway for early reduction was introduced on January 9, 2011. Fast-track patients with a suspected dislocation (with no radiographic verification) were moved directly to the post-anesthesia care unit and then straight to the operating room. Dislocation was confirmed under fluoroscopy with reduction under general anesthesia. Surgical delay (in hours), LOS (in hours), perioperative complications, and complications during the hospital stay were recorded. Dislocation status for fast-track patients (confirmed or unconfirmed by fluoroscopy) was also recorded.
Results
Both surgical delay (2.5 h vs. 4.1 h; p < 0.001) and LOS (26 h vs. 31 h; p < 0.05) were less in patients admitted through the fast-track pathway than in patients on regular pathway. Perioperative complications (1.6% vs. 3.7%) and complications during the hospital stay (11% vs. 15%) were also less, but not statistically significantly so. Only 1 patient admitted through fast-track pathway had a fracture instead of a dislocation; all the other fast-track patients with suspected dislocation actually had dislocations.
Interpretation
The fast-track pathway for reduction of dislocated hip arthroplasty results in less surgical delay and in reduced LOS, without increasing perioperative complications or complications during the patient’s stay.
doi:10.3109/17453674.2015.1007416
PMCID: PMC4443468  PMID: 25619606
2.  Low manipulation prevalence following fast-track total knee arthroplasty 
Acta Orthopaedica  2015;86(1):86-91.
Background and purpose
Postoperative joint stiffness following total knee arthroplasty (TKA) may compromise the outcome and necessitate manipulation. Previous studies have not been in a fast-track setting with optimized pain treatment, early mobilization, and short length of stay (LOS), which may have influenced the prevalence of joint stiffness and subsequent manipulation. We investigated the prevalence of manipulation following fast-track TKA and identified patients at risk of needing manipulation.
Patients and methods
3,145 consecutive unselected elective primary unilateral TKA patients operated in 6 departments with well-defined fast-track settings were included in the study. Demographic data, prevalence, type and timing of manipulation, and preoperative and postoperative ROM were recorded prospectively, ensuring complete 1-year follow-up.
Results
70 manipulations were performed within 1 year (2.2%) at a mean of 4 months after index surgery. Younger age and not using walking aids preoperatively were associated with a higher risk of manipulation. LOS ≤ 4 days (as opposed to a longer LOS) was not associated with an increased risk of manipulation.
Interpretation
The prevalence of manipulation was lower or comparable to that in most published studies following more conventional pathways. Inherent patient demographics were identified as risk factors for manipulation whereas LOS ≤ 4 days was not. Thus, fast-track TKA does not result in increased risk of manipulation—despite a shorter LOS. Optimized pain treatment and early mobilization may contribute to these favorable results that support the use of fast-track.
doi:10.3109/17453674.2014.964615
PMCID: PMC4366662  PMID: 25267501
4.  Traditions and myths in hip and knee arthroplasty 
Acta Orthopaedica  2014;85(6):548-555.
Background and purpose —
Traditions are passed on from experienced surgeons to younger fellows and become “the right way to do it”. Traditions associated with arthroplasty surgery may, however, not be evidence-based and may be potentially deleterious to both patients and society, increasing morbidity and mortality, slowing early functional recovery, and increasing cost.
Methods —
We identified selected traditions and performed a literature search using relevant search criteria (June 2014). We present a narrative review grading the studies according to evidence, and we suggest some lines of future research.
Results —
We present traditions and evaluate them against the published evidence. Preoperative removal of hair, urine testing for bacteria, use of plastic adhesive drapes intraoperatively, and prewarming of the operation room should be abandoned—as should use of a tourniquet, a space suit, a urinary catheter, and closure of the knee in extension. The safety and efficacy of tranexamic acid is supported by meta-analyses. Postoperatively, there is no evidence to support postponement of showering or postponement of changing of dressings to after 48 h. There is no evidence to recommend routine dental antibiotic prophylaxis, continuous passive motion (CPM), the use of compression stockings, cooling for pain control or reduction of swelling, flexion of at least 90 degrees as a discharge criterion following TKA, or having restrictions after THA. We present evidence supporting the use of NSAIDs, early mobilization, allowing early travel, and a low hemoglobin trigger for transfusion.
Interpretation —
Revision of traditions and myths surrounding hip and knee arthroplasty towards more contemporary evidence-based principles can be expected to improve early functional recovery, thus reducing morbidity, mortality, and costs.
doi:10.3109/17453674.2014.971661
PMCID: PMC4259040  PMID: 25285615
5.  What is the optimal alignment of the tibial and femoral components in knee arthroplasty? 
Acta Orthopaedica  2014;85(5):480-487.
Background
Surgeon-dependent factors such as optimal implant alignment are thought to play a significant role in outcome following primary total knee arthroplasty (TKA). Exact definitions and references for optimal alignment are, however, still being debated. This overview of the literature describes different definitions of component alignment following primary TKA for (1) tibiofemoral alignment in the AP plane, (2) tibial and femoral component placement in the AP plane, (3) tibial and femoral component placement in the sagittal plane, and (4) rotational alignment of tibial and femoral components and their role in outcome and implant survival.
Methods
We performed a literature search for original and review articles on implant positioning following primary TKA. Definitions for coronal, sagittal, and rotational placement of femoral and tibial components were summarized and the influence of positioning on survival and functional outcome was considered.
Results
Many definitions exist when evaluating placement of femoral and tibial components. Implant alignment plays a role in both survival and functional outcome following primary TKA, as component malalignment can lead to increased failure rates, maltracking, and knee pain.
Interpretation
Based on currently available evidence, surgeons should aim for optimal alignment of tibial and femoral components when performing TKA.
doi:10.3109/17453674.2014.940573
PMCID: PMC4164865  PMID: 25036719
6.  Role of preoperative pain, muscle function, and activity level in discharge readiness after fast-track hip and knee arthroplasty 
Acta Orthopaedica  2014;85(5):488-492.
Background and purpose
The concept of fast-track surgery has led to a decline in length of stay after total hip arthroplasty (THA) and total knee arthroplasty (TKA) to about 2–4 days. However, it has been questioned whether this is only achievable in selected patients—or in all patients. We therefore investigated the role of preoperative pain and functional characteristics in discharge readiness and actual LOS in fast-track THA and TKA.
Methods
Before surgery, hip pain (THA) or knee pain (TKA), lower-extremity muscle power, functional performance, and physical activity were assessed in a sample of 150 patients and used as independent variables to predict the outcome (dependent variable)—readiness for hospital discharge —for each type of surgery. Discharge readiness was assessed twice daily by blinded assessors.
Results
Median discharge readiness and actual length of stay until discharge were both 2 days. Univariate linear regression followed by multiple linear regression revealed that age was the only independent predictor of discharge readiness in THA and TKA, but the standardized coefficients were small (≤ 0.03).
Interpretation
These results support the idea that fast-track THA and TKA with a length of stay of about 2–4 days can be achieved for most patients independently of preoperative functional characteristics.
doi:10.3109/17453674.2014.934186
PMCID: PMC4164866  PMID: 24954491
7.  Why still in hospital after fast-track hip and knee arthroplasty? 
Acta Orthopaedica  2011;82(6):679-684.
Background and purpose
Length of stay (LOS) following total hip and knee arthroplasty (THA and TKA) has been reduced to about 3 days in fast-track setups with functional discharge criteria. Earlier studies have identified patient characteristics predicting LOS, but little is known about specific reasons for being hospitalized following fast-track THA and TKA.
Patients and methods
To determine clinical and logistical factors that keep patients in hospital for the first postoperative 24–72 hours, we performed a cohort study of consecutive, unselected patients undergoing unilateral primary THA (n = 98) or TKA (n = 109). Median length of stay was 2 days. Patients were operated with spinal anesthesia and received multimodal analgesia with paracetamol, a COX-2 inhibitor, and gabapentin—with opioid only on request. Fulfillment of functional discharge criteria was assessed twice daily and specified reasons for not allowing discharge were registered.
Results
Pain, dizziness, and general weakness were the main clinical reasons for being hospitalized at 24 and 48 hours postoperatively while nausea, vomiting, confusion, and sedation delayed discharge to a minimal extent. Waiting for blood transfusion (when needed), for start of physiotherapy, and for postoperative radiographic examination delayed discharge in one fifth of the patients.
Interpretation
Future efforts to enhance recovery and reduce length of stay after THA and TKA should focus on analgesia, prevention of orthostatism, and rapid recovery of muscle function.
doi:10.3109/17453674.2011.636682
PMCID: PMC3247885  PMID: 22066560
8.  High-volume infiltration analgesia in bilateral hip arthroplasty 
Acta Orthopaedica  2011;82(4):423-426.
Background and purpose
High-volume infiltration analgesia may be effective in postoperative pain management after hip arthroplasty but methodological problems prevent exact interpretation of previous studies.
Methods
In a randomized, double-blind placebo-controlled trial in 12 patients undergoing bilateral total hip arthroplasty (THA) in a fast-track setting, saline or high-volume (170 mL) ropivacaine (0.2%) with epinephrine (1:100,000) was administered to the wound intraoperatively along with supplementary postoperative injections via an intraarticular epidural catheter. Oral analgesia was instituted preoperatively with a multimodal regimen (gabapentin, celecoxib, and acetaminophen). Pain was assessed repeatedly for 48 hours postoperatively, at rest and with 45° hip flexion.
Results
Pain scores were low and similar between ropivacaine and saline administration. Median hospital stay was 4 (range 2–7) days.
Interpretation
Intraoperative high-volume infiltration with 0.2% ropivacaine with repeated intraarticular injections postoperatively may not give a clinically relevant analgesic effect in THA when combined with a multimodal oral analgesic regimen with gabapentin, celecoxib, and acetaminophen.
doi:10.3109/17453674.2011.596063
PMCID: PMC3237031  PMID: 21751861
9.  Fast-track revision knee arthroplasty 
Acta Orthopaedica  2011;82(4):438-440.
Background and purpose
Fast-track surgery has reduced the length of hospital stay (LOS), morbidity, and convalescence in primary hip and knee arthroplasty (TKA). We assessed whether patients undergoing revision TKA for non-septic indications might also benefit from fast-track surgery.
Methods
29 patients were operated with 30 revision arthroplasties. Median age was 67 (34–84) years. All patients followed a standardized fast-track set-up designed for primary TKA. We determined the outcome regarding LOS, morbidity, mortality, and satisfaction.
Results
Median LOS was 2 (1–4) days excluding 1 patient, who was transferred to another hospital for logistical reasons (10 days). None of the patients died within 3 months, and 3 patients were re-admitted (2 for suspicion of DVT, which was not found, and 1 for joint mobilization). Patient satisfaction was high.
Interpretation
Patients undergoing revision TKA for non-septic reasons may be included in fast-track protocols. Outcome appears to be similar to that of primary TKA regarding LOS, morbidity, and satisfaction. Our findings call for larger confirmatory studies and studies involving other indications (revision THA, 1-stage septic revisions).
doi:10.3109/17453674.2011.584211
PMCID: PMC3237034  PMID: 21561311
10.  Low risk of thromboembolic complications after fast-track hip and knee arthroplasty 
Acta Orthopaedica  2010;81(5):599-605.
Background and purpose
Pharmacological prophylaxis can reduce the risk of deep venous thrombosis (DVT), pulmonary embolism (PE), and death, and it is recommended 10–35 days after total hip arthroplasty (THA) and at least 10 days after total knee arthroplasty (TKA). However, early mobilization might also reduce the risk of DVT and thereby the need for prolonged prophylaxis, but this has not been considered in the previous literature. Here we report our results with short-duration pharmacological prophylaxis combined with early mobilization and reduced hospitalization.
Patients and methods
1,977 consecutive, unselected patients were operated with primary THA, TKA, or bilateral simultaneous TKA (BSTKA) in a well-described standardized fast-track set-up from 2004–2008. Patients received DVT prophylaxis with low-molecular-weight heparin starting 6–8 h after surgery until discharge. All re-admissions and deaths within 30 and 90 days were analyzed using the national health register, concentrating especially on clinical DVT (confirmed by ultrasound and elevated D-dimer), PE, or sudden death. Numbers were correlated to days of prophylaxis (LOS).
Results
The mean LOS decreased from 7.3 days in 2004 to 3.1 days in 2008. 3 deaths (0.15%) were associated with clotting episodes and overall, 11 clinical DVTs (0.56%) and 6 PEs (0.30%) were found. The vast majority of events took place within 30 days; only 1 death and 2 DVTs occurred between 30 and 90 days. During the last 2 years (854 patients), when patients were mobilized within 4 h postoperatively and the duration of DVT prophylaxis was shortest (1–4 days), the mortality was 0% (95% CI: 0–0.5). Incident cases of DVT in TKA was 0.60% (CI: 0.2–2.2), in THA it was 0.51% (CI: 0.1–1.8), and in BSTKA it was 0% (CI: 0–2.9). Incident cases of PE in TKA was 0.30% (CI: 0.1–1.7), in THA it was 0% (CI: 0–1.0), and in BSTKA it was 0% (CI: 0–2.9).
Interpretation
The risk of clinical DVT, and of fatal and non-fatal PE after THA and TKA following a fast-track set-up with early mobilization, short hospitalization, and short duration of DVT prophylaxis compares favorably with published regimens with extended prophylaxis (up to 36 days) and hospitalization up to 11 days. This calls for a reconsideration of optimal duration of chemical thromboprophylaxis.
doi:10.3109/17453674.2010.525196
PMCID: PMC3214750  PMID: 20919815

Results 1-10 (10)