Bone Joint J 2019;101-B:1087–1092.

The effect of patient institutional transfer during the interstage period of two-stage treatment for prosthetic knee infection

Simon Garceau, Yaniv Warschawski, Omar Dahduli, Ibrahim Alshaygy, Jesse Wolfstadt, David Backstein


The aim of this study was to assess the effects of transferring patients to a specialized arthroplasty centre between the first and second stages (interstage) of prosthetic joint infection (PJI) of the knee.

Patients and Methods

A search of our institutional database was performed to identify patients having undergone two-stage revision total knee arthroplasty (TKA) for PJI. Two cohorts were created: continuous care (CC) and transferred care (TC). Baseline characteristics and outcomes were collected and compared between cohorts.


A total of 137 patients were identified: 105 in the CC cohort (56 men, 49 women; mean age 67.9) and 32 in the TC cohort (17 men, 15 women; mean age 67.8 years). PJI organism virulence was greater in the CC cohort (36.2% vs 15.6%; p = 0.030). TC patients had a higher rate of persisting or recurrent infection (53.6% vs 13.4%; p < 0.001), soft-tissue complications (31.3 vs 14.3%; p = 0.030), and reduced requirement for porous metal augments (78.1% vs 94.3%; p = 0.006). Repeat first stage debridement after transfer led to greater need for plastic surgical procedures (58.3% vs 0.0%; p < 0.001).


Patient transfer during the interstage of treatment for infected TKA leads to poorer outcomes compared with patients receiving all their treatment at a specialized arthroplasty centre.

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