Clinical Orthopaedics and Related Research: January 2013 - Volume 471 - Issue 1 - p 238–243 doi: 10.1007/s11999-012-2480-7 Symposium: Papers Presented at the Annual Meetings of The Knee Society

High Infection Control Rate and Function After Routine One-stage Exchange for Chronically Infected TKA

Jenny, Jean-Yves, MD1, a; Barbe, Bruno, MD1; Gaudias, Jeannot, MD1; Boeri, Cyril, MD1; Argenson, Jean-Noël, MD2

Background Many surgeons consider two-stage exchange the gold standard for treating chronic infection after TKA. One-stage exchange is an alternative for infection control and might provide better knee function, but the rates of infection control and levels of function are unclear.


Questions/Purposes We asked whether a one-stage exchange protocol would lead to infection control rates and knee function similar to those after two-stage exchange.


Methods We followed all 47 patients with chronically infected TKAs treated with one-stage exchange between July 2004 and February 2007. We monitored for recurrence of infection and obtained Knee Society Scores. We followed patients a minimum of 3 years or until death or infection recurrence.


Results Three of the 47 patients (6%) experienced a persistence or recurrence of the index infection with the same pathogen isolated. Three patients (6%) had control of the index infection but between 6 and 17 months experienced an infection with another pathogen. The 3-year survival rates were 87% for being free of any infection and 91% for being healed of the index infection. Twenty-five of the 45 patients (56%) had a Knee Society Score of more than 150 points.


Conclusions While routine one-stage exchange was not associated with a higher rate of infection recurrence failure, knee function was not improved compared to that of historical patients having two-stage exchange. One stage-exchange may be a reasonable alternative in chronically infected TKA as a more convenient approach for patients without the risks of two operations and hospitalizations and for reducing costs. The ideal one stage-exchange candidate should be identified in future studies.


Level of Evidence Level IV, therapeutic study. See the Instructions for Authors for a complete description of levels of evidence.

Download article