Background and Objectives: The aim of this systematic review was to determine whether prehabilitation before total hip arthroplasty, in the form of exercise therapy, education alone, or both together, improves postoperative outcomes, such as physical functioning, compared with no intervention. Materials and Methods: A systematic literature search was performed in the online databases PubMed, PEDro and Cochrane Library using the following search keywords: "prehabilitation", "preoperative care", and "total hip replacement". Results: A total of 400 potentially relevant studies were identified. After title, abstract and full-text screening, 14 studies fulfilled all inclusion criteria and were included in this systematic review. Patients who completed exercise-based prehabilitation before their operation showed significant postoperative improvements compared with no intervention in the following tests: six-minute walk test, Timed Up and Go test, chair-rise test, and stair climbing. For various other assessments, such as the widely used Western Ontario and McMaster Universities Osteoarthritis Index (WOMAC), Hip disability and Osteoarthritis Outcome Score (HOOS), 36-item Short Form Survey (SF-36) and Barthel Index, no significant differences in outcomes regarding exercise therapy were reported in the included studies. Education alone had no effect on postoperative outcomes. Conclusions: Prehabilitation in the form of a prehabilitation exercise therapy is an effective prehabilitation measure with regard to postoperative physical functioning, while prehabilitation in the form of education has no significant effects. No negative effects of prehabilitation on the outcomes examined were reported.
Keywords: hip arthroplasty; postoperative physical functioning; prehabilitation; preoperative education; preoperative exercise.