RA patients 'have higher risk of complications after hip replacement'

28 November

Rheumatoid arthritis patients are at a higher risk of hip dislocation following hip replacement surgery compared to those with osteoarthritis, according to new research.

A study published online in Arthritis and Rheumatism also revealed that rheumatoid arthritis patients have a higher risk of infection following total knee replacement than osteoarthritis patients.

Lead author Dr Bheeshma Ravi, from the University of Toronto and Women's College Research Institute (WCRI) in Canada, noted that joint arthroplasty is successful in relieving pain and disability caused by hip or knee arthritis.

"While complication rates are low there are some cases with serious consequences that include infection, joint dislocation, blood clots and even death," he said.

His literature review found that rheumatoid arthritis patients had a higher risk of both dislocation and infection following hip replacement than their counterparts with osteoarthritis.

Meanwhile, the team found no difference in revision rate, 90 day mortality or blood clot risk between the two patient groups.

The doctor concluded: "Additional studies to confirm our findings are necessary and further investigation of possible reasons for differences in joint replacement complication rates between RA and OA patients is needed."

Posted by Philip Briggs

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