Background: The safety and efficacy of simultaneous or staged bilateral total knee arthroplasty have long been debated among orthopaedic surgeons. Advocates for simultaneous bilateral total knee arthroplasty posit that the benefits of decreased costs and recovery time, with no difference in functional outcomes, outweigh the economic costs of potential complications. The purpose of the study was to conduct a cost-utility analysis comparing simultaneous bilateral total knee arthroplasty with staged bilateral total knee arthroplasty.
Methods: A Markov model was designed to compare the cost-effectiveness of simultaneous bilateral total knee arthroplasty with that of staged bilateral total knee arthroplasty. Nationwide Inpatient Sample data sets from 2004 to 2007 were used to identify 24,574 simultaneous and 382,496 unilateral procedures. On the basis of the codes of the International Classification of Diseases, Ninth Revision, Clinical Modification, perioperative complications were categorized as minor, major, and mortality, and respective probability values were calculated. Nationwide Inpatient Sample data were used to determine hospital costs conditional on procedure type and complications. Rehabilitation costs, anesthesia costs, and heath utilities were estimated from the literature. To minimize selection bias, propensity score matching was used to match the groups on comorbid conditions, socioeconomic variables, and hospital characteristics.
Results: Using the matched sample, all complication rates were higher for the staged group. The estimated mean cost (in 2012 U.S. dollars) was $43,401 for simultaneous bilateral total knee arthroplasty compared with $72,233 for staged bilateral total knee arthroplasty. The quality-adjusted life years gained were 9.31 for simultaneous bilateral total knee arthroplasty and 9.29 for staged bilateral total knee arthroplasty. On the basis of these matched results, simultaneous bilateral total knee arthroplasty dominated staged bilateral total knee arthroplasty with lower costs and better outcomes.
Conclusions: On the basis of this analysis, simultaneous bilateral total knee arthroplasty is more cost-effective than staged bilateral total knee arthroplasty, with lower costs and better outcomes for the average patient. These data can inform shared medical decision-making when bilateral total knee arthroplasty is indicated.
Level of Evidence: Economic and decision analysis, Level II. See Instructions for Authors for a complete description of levels of evidence.
Investigation performed at the University of North Carolina at Charlotte and OrthoCarolina Research Institute, Charlotte, North Carolina
A commentary by Boris Bershadsky, PhD, is linked to the online version of this article at jbjs.org.
Disclosure: None of the authors received payments or services, either directly or indirectly (i.e., via his or her institution), from a third party in support of any aspect of this work. One or more of the authors, or his or her institution, has had a financial relationship, in the thirty-six months prior to submission of this work, with an entity in the biomedical arena that could be perceived to influence or have the potential to influence what is written in this work. No author has had any other relationships, or has engaged in any other activities, that could be perceived to influence or have the potential to influence what is written in this work. The complete Disclosures of Potential Conflicts of Interest submitted by authors are always provided with the online version of the article.
- Copyright © 2013 by The Journal of Bone and Joint Surgery, Incorporated
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