Influence of immigrant background on the outcome of total hip arthroplasty: better outcome in 280 native patients in Bosnia and Herzegovina than in 449 immigrants living in Sweden

Hip Int. 2023 Oct 5:11207000231182321. doi: 10.1177/11207000231182321. Online ahead of print.


Background: Despite the overall success of THA, between 5 and 20% report unsatisfactory results. Several factors may cause this variable outcome. 1 of them might be ethnicity which, because of its potential social impact on living conditions, may influence quality of life too. It should be studied whether patients born and being operated in their home country Bosnia and Herzegovina (BH) had similar results as immigrants being operated in Sweden (IS).

Methods: Data of 280 patients were collected prospectively from questionnaires in the BH group. Patients of the IS group were eligible if both of their parents were born outside the Nordic countries, not having Swedish as their native language. Data were gained from the Swedish Arthroplasty Registry (SAR), 449 patients were included. Outcomes were pain VAS, satisfaction VAS, EQ-VAS, and the EQ-5D. Logistic and linear regression models including age, sex, diagnosis, type of fixation, surgical incision, marital status and educational level were analysed to compare those 2 groups.

Results: There were considerable differences in patient demographics between the 2 groups. Before the operation, patients in the BH group reported more problems with self-care and usual activities, even after adjustment for confounding factors (p < 0.0005). Patients in the IS group reported a higher EQ-VAS and more pain VAS (p < 0.0005), the difference in the EQ-VAS was not significant after adjustment for confounding factors (p = 0.41). After 1 year patients in the BH group reported better scores in all dimensions of the EQ-5D (p ⩽ 0.005) apart from self-care. After adjustment for confounding factors, patients in the BH group were more satisfied too (p < 0.0005).

Conclusions: Immigrated patients (IS group) seemed to experience less benefit from THA 1 year after the operation despite more symptoms preoperatively. There were considerable limitations affecting the results. Nevertheless, the data are a point of concern, and it is suggested to take more multidimensional care of immigrant patients.

Keywords: EQ-5D; hip replacement; pain.