Knee Surg Sports Traumatol Arthrosc (2011) 19: 1121. https://doi.org/10.1007/s00167-010-1342-7

Tourniquet use in total knee arthroplasty: a meta-analysis

Tai, TW., Lin, CJ., Jou, IM. et al.
Knee

Purpose

The use of an intraoperative tourniquet for total knee arthroplasty (TKA) is a common practice. However, the effectiveness and safety are still questionable. A systematic review was conducted to examine that whether using a tourniquet in TKA was effective without increasing the risk of complications.

Methods

A comprehensive literature search was done in PubMed Medicine, Embase, and other internet database. The review work and the following meta-analysis were processed to evaluate the role of tourniquet in TKA.

Results

Eight randomized controlled trials and three high-quality prospective studies involving 634 knees and comparing TKA with and without the use of a tourniquet were included in this analysis. The results demonstrated that using a tourniquet could decrease the measured blood loss but could not decrease the calculated blood loss, which indicated actual blood loss. Patients managed with a tourniquet might have higher risks of thromboembolic complications. Using the tourniquet with late release after wound closure could shorten the operation time; whereas early release did not show this benefit.

 

Conclusions

The current evidence suggested that using tourniquet in TKA may save time but may not reduce the blood loss. Due to the higher risks of thromboembolic complications, we should use a tourniquet in TKA with caution.


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