The Journal of Arthroplasty , Volume 34 , Issue 3 , 456 - 461

Total Knee Arthroplasty Communication Checklist Increases Patient Satisfaction

Gautreau, Sylvia J. et al.


Satisfaction with total knee arthroplasty (TKA) is correlated with the fulfillment of expectations. Good surgeon-patient communication impacts how expectations are formed and managed. The TKA communication checklist was developed to help surgeons better understand and manage patients’ postoperative expectations in order to increase satisfaction with TKA.


In this prospective cohort study, mean satisfaction scores of a standard of care communication group and a checklist intervention group were compared. The duration of postoperative follow-up appointments was also assessed to determine whether the checklist took significantly more time in practice.


Sixty patients received the checklist in TKA appointments with surgeons between 6 weeks and 6 months postoperatively and their satisfaction ratings were compared with 67 patients who had received the standard of care communication. The checklist group reported higher satisfaction on overall TKA satisfaction and expectations met (P = .02), care and concern shown by the surgeon (P = .01), surgeons’ communication ability (P = .01), and satisfaction with time spent in follow-ups (P < .001). Satisfaction with relief from pain and return to function was not significant (P = .06). More time was spent in the checklist groups’ follow-ups, with a mean difference of 1 minute, 51 seconds (P = .001).


The TKA communication checklist significantly improved patients’ satisfaction across multiple dimensions. This has practical significance because patient satisfaction is increasingly used as a key performance indicator for surgeons and healthcare institutions alike. Increased TKA satisfaction will benefit patients, surgeons, and the healthcare system overall.

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