41% of total knee, hip arthroplasty patients cite persistent pain as cause of dissatisfaction: 4 study insights

Pain and functional limitations lead to dissatisfaction following total knee and hip arthroplasty, according to research published in the Journal of Arthroplasty.

Researchers fielded a satisfaction survey to 551 primary total hip and knee arthroplasty patients at least one year after surgery. Predictive factors, incidence and subjective reasoning for dissatisfaction were studied.

The key research details to know:

1. The patient satisfaction rate was 89 percent for total hip arthroplasty and 88 for total knee arthroplasty.

2. The top reason cited for dissatisfaction after total hip arthroplasty was persistent pain (41 percent). Functional limitations were the second most common reason (35 percent), followed by surgical complications and reoperations (12 percent), staff or quality of care issues (6 percent) and slow recovery (6 percent).

3. The most common reasons for dissatisfaction with total knee arthroplasty were persistent pain (41 percent), followed by functional limitation (26 percent), surgical complications and reoperations (17 percent), staff or quality of care issues (11 percent) and unmet expectations (4 percent).

4. Researchers concluded, "Patient satisfaction is not solely a reflection of surgical outcome and should be interpreted with caution. Potential for incomplete pain relief or full functional recovery should be discussed during preoperative counseling. Empathic care is also important and should be encouraged to enhance the overall patient experience."

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