sufferers who are optimistic about pending hip or knee surgery
are going to experience better pain relief than patients who
have low expectations, according to researchers at the University
Health Network in Toronto, Canada.
evaluated the relationship between patient expectations of
total joint arthroplasty and their satisfaction with the results
six months after the procedure. Arthroplasty is joint surgery
in which both joint surfaces are replaced with artificial
materials, usually metal and high-density plastic.
included 102 patients undergoing total hip arthroplasty and
89 undergoing total knee arthroplasty. The average age of
the patients was 66 years. The patients were evaluated using
questionnaires given before surgery and six months afterwards.
the patients in the study achieved significant improvements
in their condition following surgery. Patient expectations
regarding their surgery were not linked with their age, gender,
joint being operated on, marital status or race. Expectations
were not linked to the patient's health status before surgery.
of complete pain relief after surgery was an independent predictor
of better physical function and pain improvement at six months
after surgery. The expectation of low risk of complications
from total joint arthroplasty was an independent predictor
of greater patient satisfaction, according to the study published
in the Journal of Rheumatology.
expectations were important independent predictors of improved
functional outcomes and satisfaction following total joint
arthroplasty," concluded the researchers. "Greater
understanding of the relationship between expectations and
outcomes may improve the process of care and outcomes of total
of July 14, 2002