The Journal of Arthroplasty, Volume 32, Issue 2, 499 - 502

Effect of Hypoglycemia on the Incidence of Revision in Total Knee Arthroplasty

Roche, Martin W. et al.


It is well established that diabetic patients undergoing total knee arthroplasty (TKA) are more susceptible to infection, problematic wound healing, and overall higher complication rates. However, a paucity in current literature exists. The purpose of this study was to determine the effect of hypoglycemia on TKA revision (rTKA) incidence by analyzing a national private payer database for procedures performed between 2007 and 2015 Q1 Q2.


A retrospective review of a national private payer database within the PearlDiver Supercomputer application for patients undergoing TKA with blood glucose levels from 20 to 219 mg/mL, in 10-mg/mL increments, was conducted. Patients who underwent TKA were identified by Current Procedural Terminology (CPT) and International Classification of Disease (ICD) codes. Glucose ranges were identified by filtering for Logical Observation Identifiers Names and Codes within the PearlDiver database. Patients with diagnosed diabetes mellitus type I or II were excluded by using ICD-9 codes 250.00-250.03, 250.10-250.13, and 250.20-250.21. rTKA causes including mechanical loosening, failure/break, periprosthetic fracture, osteolysis, infection, pain, arthrofibrosis, instability, and trauma were identified with CPT and ICD-9 codes. Statistical analysis was primarily descriptive.


Our query returned 264,824 TKAs, of which 12,852 (4.9%) were revised. Most TKAs were performed with a glucose of 70-99 mg/mL (26.1%), followed by 100-109 mg/mL (18.5%). Patients with TKAs performed with glucose 20-29 mg/mL had the highest rate of revision (17.2%; P < .001). Infection was the most common cause of revision among all glucose ranges (P < .001).


Infection remains one of the most common causes of rTKA irrespective of glucose level. Our results suggest that hypoglycemia may increase revision rates among TKA patients. Tight glycemic control before and during surgery may be warranted.

Download article