The Journal of Arthroplasty, Volume 34, Issue 7, 1523 - 1530

Is Routine Urinary Screening Indicated Prior To Elective Total Joint Arthroplasty? A Systematic Review and Meta-Analysis

Ricardo J.G. Sousa, Miguel A. Abreu, Marjan Wouthuyzen-Bakker, Alex V. Soriano
Hip Knee


Prosthetic joint infection (PJI) is a serious complication after total joint arthroplasty, and prevention is of great importance. The genitourinary tract is a potential source of bacterial seeding and one that can be easily managed. Despite little supportive evidence, routine urine screening and subsequent treatment before elective surgery in patients without symptoms has found its way into clinical practice in many countries. This systematic review and meta-analysis aims to ascertain whether asymptomatic bacteriuria (ASB) is a risk factor for PJI and if so, whether preoperative antibiotic treatment is effective in reducing its risk.


PubMed, Ovid Medline, and Cochrane databases were searched using a systematic strategy. Selection of papers was exclusive to include only those which offered information about PJI rate specifically in patients with or without asymptomatic abnormal urinalysis or bacteriuria and/or information on whether ASB patients were preoperatively treated with antibiotics or not to be included in the analysis.


Six-hundred sixty-three papers were screened, and 10 papers were ultimately included (28,588 patients). Results show an increased risk of developing PJI among ASB patients (odds ratio = 3.64, 95% confidence interval = 1.40-9.42). However, most PJI microorganisms are unrelated to those previously found in the urine and preoperative antibiotic therapy does not influence PJI risk (odds ratio = 0.98, 95% confidence interval = 0.39-2.44).


Routine urinary screening prior to elective total joint arthroplasty and treatment of asymptomatic patients is not recommended.

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