Non-surgical treatment before hip and knee arthroplasty remains underutilized with low satisfaction regarding performance of work, sports, and leisure activities

Yvonne Van Zaanen*, Alexander Hoorntje, Koen L. M. Koenraadt, Leti Van Bodegom-Vos, Gino M. M. J. Kerkhoffs, Suzanne Waterval-Witjes, Tim A. E. J. Boymans, Rutger C. Van Geenen, P. Paul F. M. Kuijer

*Corresponding author for this work

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Background and purpose - Guidelines for managing hip and knee osteoarthritis (OA) advise extensive non-surgical treatment prior to surgery. We evaluated what percentage of hip and knee OA patients received non-surgical treatment prior to arthroplasty, and assessed patient satisfaction regarding alleviation of symptoms and performance of activities. Patients and methods - A multi-center cross-sectional study was performed in 2018 among 186 patients who were listed for hip or knee arthroplasty or had undergone surgery within the previous 6 months in the Netherlands. Questions concerned non-surgical treatments received according to the Stepped Care Strategy and were compared with utilization in 2013. Additionally, satisfaction with treatment effects for pain, swelling, stiffness, and activities of daily life, work, and sports/leisure was questioned. Results - The questionnaire was completed by 175 patients, age 66 years (range 38-84), 57% female, BMI 29 (IQR 25-33). Step 1 treatments, such as acetaminophen and lifestyle advice, were received by 79% and 60% of patients. Step 2 treatments, like exercise-based therapy and diet therapy, were received by 66% and 19%. Step 3-intra-articular injection-was received by 47%. Non-surgical treatment utilization was lower than in 2013. Nearly all treatments showed more satisfied patients regarding pain relief and fewer regarding activities of work/sports/leisure. Hip and knee OA patients were mostly satisfied with NSAIDs for all outcomes, while exercise-based therapy was rated second best. Interpretation - Despite international guideline recommendations, non-surgical treatment for hip and knee OA remains underutilized in the Netherlands. Of the patients referred for arthroplasty, more were satisfied with the effect of non-surgical treatment on pain than on work/sports/leisure participation.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)717-723
Number of pages7
JournalActa Orthopaedica
Issue number6
Early online date2 Sept 2020
Publication statusPublished - 5 Dec 2020



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