Waiting for total hip arthroplasty: avoidable loss in quality time and preventable deterioration

J Arthroplasty. 2004 Apr;19(3):302-9. doi: 10.1016/j.arth.2003.09.015.


This study was conducted to determine the effect of waiting times for total hip arthroplasty in terms of loss in quality-adjusted life years and additional burden perceived. A second goal was to study the effect of waiting times and preoperative function scores on postoperative outcome scores. Data were collected prospectively from a cohort of 161 patients waiting for total hip arthroplasty. The Oxford Hip score, Western Ontario and McMaster Universities Osteoarthritis Index, SF-36, and the EuroQol health status instruments were administered when the patient was placed on the waiting list, preoperatively, and 3 and 12 months after surgery. The disease-specific scores especially showed a significant deterioration during the waiting time. Moreover, a considerable loss of quality-adjusted life years occurred simply by postponing surgery. Although we found no direct effect of waiting time on postoperative outcomes, patients in a later phase of the disease process did not improve to the level achieved by patients with better preoperative function.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Arthroplasty, Replacement, Hip*
  • Cohort Studies
  • Follow-Up Studies
  • Health Status*
  • Humans
  • Linear Models
  • Osteoarthritis, Hip / surgery
  • Outcome Assessment, Health Care
  • Pain Measurement
  • Preoperative Care
  • Prospective Studies
  • Quality of Life
  • Surveys and Questionnaires
  • Time Factors
  • Treatment Outcome
  • Waiting Lists*