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Predicting Results of Hip Replacement Revision

Posted on: 05/25/2006
Patients with painful, loose hip replacements are usually advised to have surgery to repair or replace the implant. In this study, researchers look for factors that predict the outcome.

Level of pain and physical function are used as the main measures of success. In particular, how long the patient waited to have the surgery and problems after the operation are evaluated as predictive factors. Patients were followed for up to two years.

The authors report that time waited for revision surgery didn't affect the results. It turns out that older men had more problems lasting two years or more after the revision operation.

The greater their pain before the second operation, the worse their final results were. Also patients with other health problems were at greater risk for more pain and less function after the revision surgery. Most patients got the maximum gain in the first six months after surgery.

The authors suggest revision surgery for any reason should be done as soon as possible. This approach gives patients pain relief sooner than later. It also decreases the chances that function and pain will get worse while the patient is waiting.

Some patients are put on a waiting list such as in Canada where this study was done. If this is the case, they should be rechecked often. Change in pain (increase) or function (decrease) should bump the patient up higher in the list.

Aileen M. Davis, PhD, et al. Predictors of Functional Outcome Two Years Following Revision Hip Arthroplasty. In The Journal of Bone and Joint Surgery. April 2006. Vol. 88-A. No. 4. Pp. 685-691.

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