Acta Orthopaedica, 86:3, 335-338, DOI: 10.3109/17453674.2015.1007416

Fast-track pathway for reduction of dislocated hip arthroplasty reduces surgical delay and length of stay

Kirill Gromov, Fatin Willendrup, Henrik Palm, Anders Troelsen & Henrik Husted

Background and purpose — Dislocation is one of the most common complications following hip arthroplasty. Delay until reduction leads to pain for the patient, and may increase the risk of complications. We investigated the safety aspect of a fast-track pathway for dislocated hip arthroplasties and evaluated its effect on surgical delay and length of stay (LOS).

Patients and methods — 402 consecutive and unselected dislocations (253 patients) were admitted at our institution between May 10, 2010 and September 31, 2013. The fast-track pathway for early reduction was introduced on January 9, 2011. Fast-track patients with a suspected dislocation (with no radiographic verification) were moved directly to the post-anesthesia care unit and then straight to the operating room. Dislocation was confirmed under fluoroscopy with reduction under general anesthesia. Surgical delay (in hours), LOS (in hours), perioperative complications, and complications during the hospital stay were recorded. Dislocation status for fast-track patients (confirmed or unconfirmed by fluoroscopy) was also recorded.

Results — Both surgical delay (2.5 h vs. 4.1 h; p < 0.001) and LOS (26 h vs. 31 h; p < 0.05) were less in patients admitted through the fast-track pathway than in patients on regular pathway. Perioperative complications (1.6% vs. 3.7%) and complications during the hospital stay (11% vs. 15%) were also less, but not statistically significantly so. Only 1 patient admitted through fast-track pathway had a fracture instead of a dislocation; all the other fast-track patients with suspected dislocation actually had dislocations.

Interpretation — The fast-track pathway for reduction of dislocated hip arthroplasty results in less surgical delay and in reduced LOS, without increasing perioperative complications or complications during the patient’s stay.

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