Shorter Hospital Stay and Lower 30-Day Readmission After Unicondylar Knee Arthroplasty Compared to Total Knee Arthroplasty

J Arthroplasty. 2016 Feb;31(2):356-61. doi: 10.1016/j.arth.2015.09.014. Epub 2015 Sep 18.


Background: Reducing hospital stay and unplanned hospital readmission of arthroplasty patients has been a topic of recent interest. The aim of the present study was to query the National Surgical Quality Improvement Program database to compare the length of hospital stay (LOS) and the subsequent 30-day hospital readmission rates in patients undergoing primary unicondylar knee arthroplasty (UKA) and total knee arthroplasty (TKA).

Methods: We identified 1340 UKAs and 36,274 TKAs over a 2-year period (2011-2012). Patient demographics, comorbidities, LOS, 30-day postoperative complications, and readmission rates were compared between the groups. Multivariate regression analysis was used to determine the effect of procedure type on LOS and readmission rates.

Results: Unicondylar knee arthroplasty patients had a median LOS of 2 days compared to 3 days for TKAs (P < .001). The readmission rate in the TKA group was nearly double that of the UKA group (4.1% vs 2.2%) (P < .0001). Multivariate regression analysis identified that undergoing a UKA was predictive for a shorter LOS (coefficient -1 day) and was protective for 30-day readmission (odds ratio, 0.60; 95% confidence interval, 0.41-0.88).

Conclusion: Patients undergoing UKA had a shorter LOS and a lower 30-day readmission rate compared to TKA patients. After adjusting for selected cofounders, we demonstrated that undergoing a UKA is a protective factor for 30-day readmission.

Keywords: 30-day readmission; ACS; NSQIP; length of stay; total knee arthroplasty; unicondylar knee arthroplasty.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study

MeSH terms

  • Aged
  • Arthroplasty, Replacement, Knee / methods*
  • Databases, Factual
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Length of Stay*
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Patient Readmission*
  • Postoperative Complications / epidemiology
  • United States / epidemiology