Myocardial Infarction Risk Increased After Joint Replacement
Written by Editor   
Monday, September 28, 2015 08:12 AM

The American College of Rheumatology estimates the US prevalence of osteoarthritis to be 27 million among those older than 25 years, with approximately 1.8 million arthroplasty procedures performed each year worldwide. 

Total knee or hip arthroplasty (TKA or THA) for osteoarthritis is linked to substantially increased risk for myocardial infarction (MI) in the immediate postoperative period, according to a cohort study. 

"Our findings provide the first general population-based evidence that osteoarthritis patients who have total knee or total hip replacement surgery are at increased risk for heart attack in the immediate postoperative period," the senior author said.

The cohort consisted of persons aged 50 years or older with a diagnosis of knee osteoarthritis or hip osteoarthritis between January 2000 and December 2012 who were included in the United Kingdom’s Health Improvement Network database from general practitioners.

During follow-up the risk for MI was substantially increased in the TKA group compared with in the non-TKA group during the first postoperative month. During subsequent follow-up, this increased risk gradually declined and became insignificant 6 months after TKA. The risk ratio of MI became insignificant 1 month after THA.

The risk for venous thromboembolism was also substantially increased during the first month after surgery for both patients who underwent TKA and those who underwent THA compared with those who did not undergo surgery. However, unlike the risk for MI, the risk for venous thromboembolism remained elevated over time.