Aim: The first aim of this study was to verify the applicability of the International Classification of Functioning Disability and Health (ICF) core set for osteoarthritis (OA) as an outcome tool after the total hip arthroplasty (THA) and total knee arthroplasty (TKA), in order to follow the changes of the profile of functioning after joint arthroplasty.
Methods: Seventy-two OA inpatients were consecutively enrolled during the first three days of rehabilitation after THA (34.7%) or TKA (65.3%) and were evaluated of the ICF Core Set for OA. Patients were interviewed at the beginning of the study one month prior to surgery, at the end of the rehabilitation treatment lasting on average three weeks and three and six months after their discharge.
Results: The ICF core set data comparison showed many significant differences among the four evaluations with a significant improvement in many categories assessed. At the six months interview activity limitations and participation restrictions were still reported, even if with a lower percentage as compared to the first evaluation.
Conclusion: The ICF core set for OA resulted an interesting outcome tool after the THA or TKA, even if more research is needed, mainly on data reliability and category definition. Even tough problems in the administration were encountered, the ICF core set allowed to focus on issues and aspects of patient's every day life usually not taken into account or not codified in the usual care assessment.