Does Surgeon Volume Affect Outcomes Following Primary Total Hip Arthroplasty? A Systematic Review.

Malik AT, Jain N, Scharschmidt TJ, Li M, Glassman AH, Khan SN
J Arthroplasty 33 3329-3342 01/01/2018

Abstract

BACKGROUND: Surgeon volume has been identified as an important factor impacting postoperative outcome in patients undergoing orthopedic surgeries. With an absence of a detailed systematic review, we sought to collate evidence on the impact of surgeon volume on postoperative outcomes in patients undergoing primary total hip arthroplasty.

METHODS: PubMed (MEDLINE) and Google Scholar databases were queried for articles using the following search criteria: ("Surgeon Volume" OR "Provider Volume" OR "Volume Outcome") AND ("THA" OR "Total hip replacement" OR "THR" OR "Total hip arthroplasty"). Studies investigating total hip arthroplasty being performed for malignancy or hip fractures were excluded from the review. Twenty-eight studies were included in the final review. All studies underwent a quality appraisal using the GRADE tool. The systematic review was performed in accordance with the PRISMA guidelines.

RESULTS: Increasing surgeon volume was associated with a shorter length of stay, lower costs, and lower dislocation rates. Studies showed a significant association between an increasing surgeon volume and higher odds of early-term and midterm survivorship, but not long-term survivorships. Although complications were reported and recorded differently in studies, there was a general trend toward a lower postoperative morbidity with regard to complications following surgeries by a high-volume surgeon.

CONCLUSION: This systematic review shows evidence of a trend toward better postoperative outcomes with high-volume surgeons. Future prospective studies are needed to better determine long-term postoperative outcomes such as survivorship before healthcare policies such as regionalization and/or equal-access healthcare systems can be considered.

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