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Arthroscopy. 2005 May;21(5):605-10.

Immediate postoperative fluid retention and weight gain after shoulder arthroscopy.

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The San Antonio Orthopaedic Group, San Antonio, Texas, USA.



The primary purpose of this study was to determine the amount of weight gain immediately after shoulder arthroscopy. In addition, patient and surgical factors correlated with weight gain were analyzed. We hypothesized that there would be a significant increase in weight immediately after shoulder arthroscopy and that the amount of weight gain would correlate with a number of surgical factors.


Observational case series.


Fifty-three patients were enrolled in the study. There were 34 male and 19 female patients, with a mean age of 47.1 +/- 13.8 years. All patients were weighed before and after surgery using the same weight scale by the same observer. Weight gain was calculated and adjusted to account for the weight of the dressing and sling. Weight gain then was correlated to various clinical and surgical variables. Pearson correlation coefficients, Student t tests, and stepwise regression were used to determine significant correlations between clinical and surgical variables and weight gain.


The mean amount of net weight gain was 8.7 +/- 3.9 lb (range, 0.8-18.8 lb), representing 4.6% +/- 2.1% of preoperative weight. The mean amount of weight gain attributable to arthroscopy fluid only was 4.2 +/- 3.8 lb (range, 0-14.5 lb), representing a gain of 2.2% +/- 2.0% of preoperative weight. The mean amount of intravenous fluid infused was 1,885 +/- 547 mL, and the mean amount of normal saline arthroscopy fluid used was 30 +/- 24 L. Surgical time, the amount of arthroscopy fluid, the size of the rotator cuff tear, the number of tendons involved, the presence of a subscapularis tear, the number of procedures performed, the concomitant performance of a subacromial decompression, the number of BioCorkscrew (Arthrex, Inc., Naples, FL) anchors used, and the total number of anchors used all correlated with increasing weight gain (all P < .05). A procedure of stepwise regression selection did not identify any quantitative parameters attributable to weight gain other than the earlier-described parameters. There were no significant intraoperative or postoperative complications attributable to the amount of weight gain.


Weight gain immediately after shoulder arthroscopy is a common finding. Although no complications were seen in this group of patients, both patients and surgeons should be aware of this concern after shoulder arthroscopy and the potential complications related to it.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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