Prospective Validation of a Demographically Based Primary Total Knee Arthroplasty Size Calculator

J Arthroplasty. 2019 Jul;34(7):1369-1373. doi: 10.1016/j.arth.2019.02.048. Epub 2019 Mar 7.


Background: Preoperative planning for total knee arthroplasty (TKA) is essential for streamlining operating room efficiency and reducing costs. Digital templating and patient-specific instrumentation have shown some value in TKA but require additional costs and resources. The purpose of this study was to validate a previously published algorithm that uses only demographic variables to accurately predict TKA tibial and femoral component sizes.

Methods: Four hundred seventy-four consecutive patients undergoing elective primary TKA were prospectively enrolled. Four surgeons were included, three of which were unaffiliated with the retrospective cohort study. Patient sex, height, and weight were entered into our published Arthroplasty Size Prediction mobile application. Accuracy of the algorithm was compared with the actual sizes of the implanted femoral and tibial components from 5 different implant systems. Multivariate regression analysis was used to identify independent risk factors for inaccurate outliers for our model.

Results: When assessing accuracy to within ±1 size, the accuracies of tibial and femoral components were 87% (412/474) and 76% (360/474). When assessing accuracy to within ±2 sizes of predicted, the tibial accuracy was 97% (461/474), and the femoral accuracy was 95% (450/474). Risk factors for the actual components falling outside of 2 predicted sizes include weight less than 70 kg (odds ratio = 2.47, 95% confidence interval [1.21-5.06], P = .01) and use of an implant system with <2.5 mm incremental changes between femoral sizes (odds ratio = 5.50, 95% confidence interval [3.33-9.11], P < .001).

Conclusions: This prospective series of patients validates a simple algorithm to predict component sizing for TKA with high accuracy based on demographic variables alone. Surgeons can use this algorithm to simplify the preoperative planning process by reducing unnecessary trays, trials, and implant storage, particularly in the community or outpatient setting where resources are limited. Further assessment of components with less than 2.5-mm differences between femoral sizes is required in the future to make this algorithm more applicable worldwide.

Keywords: demographics; electronic application; preoperative planning; templating; total knee arthroplasty.

Publication types

  • Validation Study

MeSH terms

  • Algorithms
  • Arthroplasty, Replacement, Knee / instrumentation*
  • Body Weight
  • Demography
  • Femur / surgery
  • Humans
  • Knee Prosthesis / statistics & numerical data*
  • Mobile Applications / statistics & numerical data*
  • Prospective Studies
  • Retrospective Studies
  • Surgeons
  • Tibia / surgery