Obese Patients Achieve Good Improvements in Patient-Reported Outcome Measures After Medial Unicompartmental Knee Arthroplasty Despite a Lower Preoperative Score

J Arthroplasty. 2023 Feb;38(2):252-258.e2. doi: 10.1016/j.arth.2022.09.002. Epub 2022 Sep 10.


Background: In this study, we examined the association between obesity and patient-reported outcome measures after medial unicompartmental knee arthroplasty (MUKA), assessed through score changes, Patient Acceptable Symptom State (PASS), and minimal important change (MIC). Second, the association between obesity and early readmissions was examined.

Methods: A total of 450 MUKAs (mean body mass index [BMI] 30.3, range, 19.6-53.1), performed from February 2016 to December 2020, were grouped using BMI: <30, 30-34.9, and >34.9. Oxford Knee Score (OKS), Forgotten Joint Score (FJS), and Activity and Participation Questionnaire (APQ) were assessed preoperatively and at 3, 12, and 24 months, postoperatively. The 12-month PASS and MIC were also assessed, defining PASS as OKS = 30, MIC-OKS as change in OKS = 8, and MIC-FJS as change in FJS = 14.

Results: No significant differences in OKS change were found between BMI groups. After 12 months, patients who had a BMI of 30-34.9 had lower change in FJS (estimate -8.1, 95% CI -14.9 to -1.4) and were less likely to reach PASS (odds ratio 0.4, 95% CI 0.2-0.7) as well as MIC-FJS (odds ratio 0.5, 95% CI 0.2-0.9). Both obese groups had lower change in APQ after 12 months. Differences in 90-day readmission rates were nonsignificant between groups.

Conclusion: Our findings of no differences in OKS improvement between BMI groups and achieving MIC for BMI > 34.9 suggest good improvements in obese patients despite lower preoperative scores, supporting contemporary indications for MUKA. Lower APQ development and achievement of 12-month PASS may be used when addressing expectations of recovery.

Keywords: Oxford Knee Score; minimal important change; obesity; patient acceptable symptom state; patient-reported outcome measures; unicompartmental knee arthroplasty.

MeSH terms

  • Arthroplasty, Replacement, Knee* / adverse effects
  • Body Mass Index
  • Humans
  • Obesity / surgery
  • Osteoarthritis, Knee* / etiology
  • Osteoarthritis, Knee* / surgery
  • Patient Reported Outcome Measures
  • Treatment Outcome