Outpatient total shoulders see fewer 90-day readmissions, report finds

With an increase in the amount of total shoulder arthroplasties performed outpatient, 90-day readmissions fell during the COVID-19 pandemic, according to a study led by orthopedic surgeon Abhijit Seetharam, MD.

The study, which was presented during the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons annual meeting, evaluated 567 patients who underwent anatomic or reverse total shoulder arthroplasty, Healio reported April 11. The patients were separated into two groups based on whether their surgery was performed pre-COVID-19 or during the pandemic.

The researchers looked at length of stay, 90-day readmission and complication rates, ER visits, venous thromboembolism and infection, the report said. Outpatient cases accounted for 6 percent of the pre-COVID-19 cases, while 32 percent of the mid-pandemic cases were outpatient, Dr. Seetharam said.

The pandemic-associated increase in outpatient total shoulders coincided with a decrease in length of stay and 90-day readmission rates, the report said. There were no significant differences in the other measures evaluated in the study.

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