The Journal of Arthroplasty, Volume 36, Issue 3, 1023 - 1028

Iron Deficiency Anemia is Associated with Increased Early Postoperative Surgical and Medical Complications Following Total Hip Arthroplasty

Sequeira, Sean B. et al.


Iron deficiency anemia (IDA) is a medical comorbidity commonly diagnosed in those undergoing primary total hip arthroplasty (THA). The authors sought to evaluate IDA as a risk factor for early postoperative complications following discharge and describe the hospital resource utilization of this patient population.


Patients with a diagnosis of IDA who underwent THA from 2005 to 2014 were identified in a national insurance database. The rates of postoperative medical complications and surgery-related complications, as well as hospital readmission, emergency department visits, and death were calculated. Additionally, 90-day and day of surgery cost and length of stay were calculated. IDA patients were then compared to a 4:1 matched control population without IDA using a logistic regression analysis to control for confounding factors.


In total, 98,681 patients with a preoperative diagnosis of IDA who underwent THA were identified and compared to 386,724 controls. IDA was associated with increased risk of 30-day emergency department visits (odds ratio [OR] 1.35, P < .001) and 30-day readmission (OR 1.49, P < .001). IDA was also associated with an increased 90-day medical complication rate (cerebrovascular accident OR 1.11, P = .003; urinary tract infection OR 1.14, P < .001; acute renal failure OR 1.24, P < .001; transfusion OR 1.40, P < .001), as well as 1-year periprosthetic joint infection (OR 1.27, P < .001), revision (OR 1.22, P < .001), dislocation (OR 1.25, P < .001), and fracture (OR 1.43, P < .001). Patients with IDA accrued higher hospital charges ($27,658.27 vs $16,709.18, P < .001) and lower hospital reimbursement ($5509.90 vs $3605.59, P < .001).


Patients with preoperative IDA undergoing THA are at greater risk of experiencing early postoperative complications and have greater utilization of hospital resources.

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