Background: Patient-reported outcome measures are increasingly recognized as an important tool in quantifying the clinical success of arthroplasty surgery. The aim of this study is to measure post-operative joint awareness and satisfaction in patients with and without a quantitatively balanced knee following primary total knee arthroplasty (TKA).
Methods: In this multi-center study, a total of 318 eligible patients were assigned to one of the 2 patient groups: sensor-guided TKA or surgeon-guided TKA. In the sensor-guided group, quantitative balancing was performed according to intercompartmental tibiofemoral load measurements measured by an instrumented tibial trial component. In contrast, for the surgeon-guided group, the knees were balanced according to the surgeons' standard manual techniques while blinding the surgeon to the sensor measurements. Patients were blinded to their allocation and filled out the validated Forgotten Joint Score and 2011 Knee Society Satisfaction questionnaires at 6 weeks and 6 months. For the purposes of this study, the subjects were pooled and stratified by their state of soft tissue balance, based on the mediolateral load differential through the range of motion.
Results: In the surgeon-guided group, approximately 50% of the cases yielded a quantitatively balanced knee. Significantly more balanced knees were observed in the sensor-guided group (84.0%). More importantly, for both outcome measures, the balanced group of patients reported significantly better outcomes scores.
Conclusion: This demonstrates that using sensor feedback during knee arthroplasty surgery results in a more reproducible procedure, resulting in a higher percentage of balanced patients who in turn demonstrate superior clinical outcomes compared to unbalanced patients.
Keywords: forgotten joint; intraoperative sensors; satisfaction; soft tissue balance; total knee arthroplasty.
Copyright © 2019. Published by Elsevier Inc.