VIENNA — In patients who undergo primary total hip arthroplasty, surgeries performed by trainees provided similar outcomes and patient satisfaction as surgeries performed by experienced surgeons, according to a study to be presented today in the Free Papers award session for orthopaedics at the 18th EFORT Annual Congress in Vienna.
In this register-based observational study, researchers identified 8,116 patients with primary total hip arthroplasties (THA) in the surgery and anesthesia management system in the Western Region in Sweden for which the experience level of the surgeon could be determined. Significant differences were observed in demographic data, particularly in terms of mean age and BMI, between less experienced and more experienced surgeons. For trainees, patient mean age at operation was 71.2 years; for surgeons with less than 8 years of experience, the mean age was 68.8 years, compared to the reference 67.1 years. Trainees had patients with a mean BMI at surgery of 26.9 kg/m2, which differed significantly from patients treated by surgeons with more than 15 years of experience (27.4 kg/m2). The ASA class, diagnostic indication for implantation and fixation technique also demonstrated significant disparities between surgeon groups. No significant differences were observed in terms of pain, EQ-5D index or EQ-VAS for any subgroups.
“After analysing the effect of surgeons’ experience on patient-reported outcomes (PROs), we found that 1 year after THA, patients operated on by consultants reported slightly higher satisfaction,” Per Jolbäck, RN, told Orthopaedics Today Europe.
No other differences in PROs were observed between the different surgeon subgroups.
“Our findings support that the Swedish teaching tradition in TKA is safe and should not raise ethical concerns among patients, surgeons or regulating authorities,” Jolbäck said. “It is reassuring that patients operated on by trainees in the Western Region can expect the same improvements in quality of life and pain relief as if the surgery had been performed by an experienced surgeon.”
Jolbäck P, et al. Paper #2386. Scheduled to be presented: 2 June 2017 at 11:46 - 11:54 in the Helsinki Room at the 18th EFORT Annual Congress; 31 May - 2 June 2017; Vienna.
Per Jolbäck, RN, can be reached at Sahlgrenska Academy, University of Gothenburg, 405 30 Gothenburg, Sweden; email: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Disclosure: Jolbäck reports no relevant financial disclosures.