Total Hip and Knee Arthroplasty Surgery in the Morbidly Obese Patient: A Critical Analysis Review : JBJS Reviews

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Total Hip and Knee Arthroplasty Surgery in the Morbidly Obese Patient

A Critical Analysis Review

Carroll, Jeremy D. MD; Young, Joseph R. MD; Mori, Benjamin Villacres MD; Gheewala, Rohan MD; Lakra, Akshay MD; DiCaprio, Matthew R. MD

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JBJS Reviews 11(4):e22.00177, April 2023. | DOI: 10.2106/JBJS.RVW.22.00177


  • » Obesity, defined as body mass index (BMI) ≥30, is a serious public health concern associated with an increased incidence of stroke, diabetes, mental illness, and cardiovascular disease resulting in numerous preventable deaths yearly.
  • » From 1999 through 2018, the age-adjusted prevalence of morbid obesity (BMI ≥40) in US adults aged 20 years and older has risen steadily from 4.7% to 9.2%, with other estimates showing that most of the patients undergoing hip and knee replacement by 2029 will be obese (BMI ≥30) or morbidly obese (BMI ≥40).
  • » In patients undergoing total joint arthroplasty (TJA), morbid obesity (BMI ≥40) is associated with an increased risk of perioperative complications, including prosthetic joint infection and mechanical failure necessitating aseptic revision.
  • » The current literature on the role that bariatric weight loss surgery before TJA has on improving surgical outcomes is split and referral to a bariatric surgeon should be a shared-decision between patient and surgeon on a case-by-case basis.
  • » Despite the increased risk profile of TJA in the morbidly obese cohort, these patients consistently show improvement in pain and physical function postoperatively that should be considered when deciding for or against surgery.

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