A patient satisfaction survey investigating pre- and post-operative information provision in lower limb surgeryRenna, M.S., Metcalfe, A., Ellard, D. et al.
Planned lower limb surgery is common, with over 90,000 hip replacements, 95,000 knee replacements and 15,000 anterior cruciate ligament reconstructions performed in the UK each year. These procedures are primarily indicated to treat osteoarthritis, sporting injuries and trauma. Patient satisfaction is an important element of healthcare provision, which is usually measured by functional outcomes but influenced by other factors. Few studies have assessed patients’ views on the information given to them pertaining surgery and patients are infrequently consulted when designing leaflets and information packs, which can lead to confusion during the recovery period and poor long-term outcomes. Furthermore, previous studies have not directly asked patients what resources they would prefer, or which format would suit them best. This project aimed to assess if patients were satisfied with the information they received around their operations and to identify potential improvements.
Set in a National Health Service (NHS) run major trauma centre in the West Midlands, a multiple choice and free-text answer survey was administered to patients who used the orthopaedic service over the course of 1 month. Surveys were designed in Qualtrics and administered face-to-face on paper. Thematic content analysis was performed on the results.
Eighty patients completed the survey, of which 88.8% of patients were satisfied with the information they received. Discussions with surgeons were the most useful resource and 53% of patients requested more internet resources. Post-operative patients were statistically more likely to be dissatisfied with information provision than pre-operative patients. Over 20% of the study population requested more information on post-operative pain and recovery timelines.
Although patients were satisfied in general, areas for change were identified. Suggested resources took the form of webpages and mobile platforms. These resources could contain educational videos, patient experience blogs or interactive recovery timelines, to be of benefit to patients. These suggestions may enable NHS Trusts to “get into the digital age”, however, more research on patient satisfaction around information provision and the impact it has on recovery and decision making is needed.