The Journal of Arthroplasty, Volume 34, Issue 8, 1553 - 1556

Average Operative Times for 1,313 Primary Total Hip Arthroplasty and 1,300 Primary Total Knee Arthroplasty Over 39 Months Are Roughly Equal to Medicare Attributed Operative Times

Roshan P. Shah, David Lauthen, Jeffrey A. Geller, H. John Cooper
Hip Knee

Background

Primary arthroplasty current procedural terminology codes have been proposed for reexamination due to concern that the intraservice skin-to-skin time is overestimated at 100 minutes. We sought to determine actual intraservice times for primary total hip arthroplasty (THA) and primary total knee arthroplasty (TKA).

Methods

We queried hospital administrative databases to determine average intraservice times for 4 fellowship-trained arthroplasty surgeons at an urban, academic institution.

Results

There were 1313 primary THA performed over the study period. The mean intraservice time was 102 minutes (standard deviation 26 minutes). There were no consistent trends over time. There were 1300 primary TKA performed over the study period. The mean intraservice time was 116 minutes (standard deviation 25 minutes). There were no consistent trends over time.

Conclusions

We found an average operative time that was very close to the current benchmarked times for THA and 16% longer than the benchmarked times for TKA. The incentives of for-profit insurance companies and third-party organizations must be considered when considering requests for a rereview of the physician work and carefully weighed against real data, such as presented here, and the impact on access to care for patients.

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