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J Arthroplasty. 2012 Feb;27(2):180-5. doi: 10.1016/j.arth.2011.04.023. Epub 2011 Jun 14.

Cost-effectiveness analysis of custom total knee cutting blocks.

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Department of Orthopaedic Surgery, NYU Hospital for Joint Diseases, New York, New York, USA.


The purposes of this study were to examine the cost-effectiveness of this technology and to determine improvements in patient outcome needed to make custom total knee cutting blocks cost-effective. A Markov decision model was used to evaluate the cost-effectiveness of custom cutting blocks compared with traditional instrumentation in total knee arthroplasty. The analysis demonstrates routine use of custom cutting blocks for total knee arthroplasty will not be cost-effective unless it results in a significantly reduced revision rate. The reduction necessary increases with increasing costs for the custom blocks. Further research will be necessary to determine if this can be achieved using custom cutting blocks. Patients, surgeons, payers, and institutions should consider this when determining their support of this technology in the absence of supportive data.

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