A study conducted at Kaiser Permanente suggests a standardized national registry of joint replacement devices would improve patient outcomes and create clinical and financial efficiencies. More than 600,000 total knee and hip replacements are performed annually in the United States.

Kaiser has registries for total joint replacement and anterior cruciate ligament reconstruction. The joint registry, created in 2001, has more than 100,000 registered implants. Kaiser's study of 80,000 total joint replacement and 5,000 ACL procedures, based on data in its registries supplemented with electronic health records data found:

* The three most common reasons for re-operations of ACL reconstruction of the knee were meniscus injury, stiffness and device removal;

* An increased rate of ACL reconstructions for specific demographics among men and women, particularly females 14-17 years of age; and

* A correlation of increased time between injury and surgery and increased rate of additional knee injuries.

Further, the registries were used to track eight recalls and advisories during the study period. The study was published in the November issue of the Journal of Bone and Joint Surgery, available here.

--Joseph Goedert


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