The current literature about revision total knee arthroplasty (rTKA) for aseptic causes is focused mainly on “doctorly” data such as complication rates and implant survivorship. Taking a different tack in the October 21, 2020 issue of JBJS, Siddiqi et al. report findings from a comprehensive evaluation of patient-reported outcome measures (PROMs) at baseline and 1 year following rTKA. The PROMs evaluated included KOOS-Pain, KOOS-Physical Function, KOOS-QOL, and Veterans Rand-12.
Here is a general summary of the findings:
- Patients undergoing aseptic rTKA had overall improvements in pain and function scores at 1 year postoperatively.
- Knee-related QOL improved nearly 30 points, but >50% of patients did not report improvement in their overall global health at 1 year.
- Predictors of improved 1-year pain scores were older age, baseline arthrofibrosis, lower baseline pain, and non-Medicare/Medicaid insurance.
- Predictors of improved 1-year function scores were baseline arthrofibrosis and female sex.
- Larger mean pain-score improvements occurred in patients undergoing rTKA for implant failure and aseptic loosening; pain-score improvements were lower in patients undergoing rTKA for instability.
Although 31% of the 246 eligible patients were lost to follow-up and excluded from the final analysis, the authors say their findings “corroborate the overall quality and, most importantly, the value that aseptic rTKA provides to patients.” Perhaps the findings’ greatest value is their potential application in the shared decision-making process between surgeons and patients pondering an aseptic rTKA, and in helping set realistic patient expectations if the surgery is undertaken.