Even total joint replacement patients who live alone can recover better at home: study

This article was originally published here

A study presented at the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons annual meeting reported patients recover better when they’re discharged home.

The study examined 769 patients who underwent total knee or hip replacements, and 138 lived alone. However, 80 percent of those patients said they had a friend or relative living nearby that could assist if needed.

The study found patients living alone could recover safely without increased risks of complications.

“We find with our own patients that recovery is expedited when they are in familiar surroundings and have ample opportunity to rest and recover naturally,” said Gary Stein, MD, of Santa Rosa (Calif.) Orthopaedics. “Along with advancements in surgical techniques that make surgeries less invasive is the availability of outpatient rehabilitation centers. These are just some of the factors that make it much more likely that patients can recover quickly and on their own terms.”

There are around 332,000 total hip and 719,000 total knee replacements performed in the U.S. per year and the long-term success rate is around 95 percent. Patients are now able to recover at home, which increases patient satisfaction and can decrease costs. Recovering at home saved an estimated $10,776 per patient and $1.5 million total for all of the study participants.

More articles on orthopedic surgery:
Olympia Orthopaedics Associates adds Dr. Milan Moore
Dr. Charles Cornell becomes Stamford Health’s chair of orthopedic surgery
5 factors to consider when deciding between anterior and posterior approach in hip replacements

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