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Unicompartmental knee arthroplasty undertaken using a fast-track protocol

a prospective cohort study of 3,927 procedures, their use, length of stay, and readmission

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The aim of this prospective multicentre study was to describe trends in length of stay and early complications and readmissions following unicompartmental knee arthroplasty (UKA) performed at eight different centres in Denmark using a fast-track protocol and to compare the length of stay between centres with high and low utilization of UKA.


We included data from eight dedicated fast-track centres, all reporting UKAs to the same database, between 2010 and 2018. Complete ( > 99%) data on length of stay, 90-day readmission, and mortality were obtained during the study period. Specific reasons for a length of stay of > two days, length of stay > four days, and 30- and 90-day readmission were recorded. The use of UKA in the different centres was dichotomized into ≥ 20% versus < 20% of arthroplasties which were undertaken being UKAs, and ≥ 52 UKAs versus < 52 UKAs being undertaken annually.


A total of 3,927 procedures were included. Length of stay (mean 1.1 days (SD 1.1), median 1 (IQR 0 to 1)) was unchanged during the study period. The proportion of procedures with a length of stay > two days was also largely unchanged during this time. The percentage of patients discharged on the day of surgery varied greatly between centres (0% to 50% (0 to 481)), with centres with high UKA utilization (both usage and volume) having a larger proportion of same-day discharges. The 30- and 90-day readmissions were 166 (4.2%) and 272 (6.9%), respectively; the 90-day mortality was 0.08% (n = 3).


Our findings suggest general underutilization of the potential for quicker recovery following UKA in a fast-track setup.

Cite this article: Bone Joint J 2020;102-B(9):1167–1175.

Correspondence should be sent to Kirill Gromov. E-mail:

Frank Madsen, MD, Department of Orthopedics, Aarhus University Hospital, Aarhus, Denmark. Torben B. Hansen, Prof., MD, PhD, Department of Orthopedics, Regional Hospital Holstebro and University of Aarhus, Holstebro, Denmark. Kirill Gromov, MD, PhD, Department of Orthopedics, Hvidovre Hospital; Hvidovre, Denmark. Mogens Laursen, Ass. Prof., MD, PhD, Aalborg University Hospital Northern Orthopaedic Division, Aalborg, Denmark; Per Kjærsgaard-Andersen, Assistant Professor, MD, Department of Orthopedics, Vejle Hospital, Vejle, Denmark. Soren Solgaard, MD, DMSci, Department of Orthopedics, Gentofte University Hospital, Copenhagen, Denmark. Niels Harry Krarup, MD, Department of Orthopedics, Viborg Hospital, Viborg, Denmark. Jens Bagger, MD, Department of Orthopaedic Surgery, Copenhagen University Hospital Bispebjerg, Copenhagen NV, Denmark.

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