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J Orthop Sports Phys Ther. 2010 Sep;40(9):559-67. doi: 10.2519/jospt.2010.3317.

Outcomes before and after total knee arthroplasty compared to healthy adults.

Author information

1
University of Colorado, School of Medicine, Aurora, CO, USA.

Abstract

STUDY DESIGN:

Prospective cohort study.

OBJECTIVES:

To measure changes in muscle strength, range of motion, and function from 2 weeks before to 6 months after total knee arthroplasty (TKA) and compare outcomes with data from a control group consisting of healthy adults.

BACKGROUND:

Total knee arthroplasty successfully alleviates pain from knee osteoarthritis, but deficits in function can persist long term. How impairments and functional limitations change over the first 6 months after TKA, compared to data from healthy adults, has not been well reported in the literature.

METHODS:

Twenty-four patients who underwent a primary unilateral TKA were compared to healthy adults (n = 17). All patients participated in a standardized rehabilitation program following surgery. Isometric quadriceps torque was assessed using an electromechanical dynamometer. Range of motion was measured actively and passively. Functional performance was assessed using the stair-climbing test, timed up-and-go test, 6-minute walk test, and single-limb stance time. Patients underwent testing at 2 weeks preoperatively and at 1, 3, and 6 months postoperatively.

RESULTS:

Compared to healthy older adults, patients performed significantly worse at all times for all measures (P<.05), except for single-limb stance time at 6 months (P>.05). One month postoperatively, patients experienced significant losses from preoperative levels in all outcomes. Patients recovered to preoperative levels by 6 months postoperatively on all measures, except knee flexion range of motion, but still exhibited the same extent of limitation they did prior to surgery.

CONCLUSION:

The persistent impairments and functional limitations 6 months after TKA with standard rehabilitation suggest that more intensive therapeutic approaches may be necessary to restore function of patients following TKA to the levels of healthy adults.

PMID:
20710093
PMCID:
PMC3164265
DOI:
10.2519/jospt.2010.3317
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article

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