Disruption of joint arthroplasty services in Europe during the COVID-19 pandemic: an online survey within the European Hip Society (EHS) and the European Knee Associates (EKA)

M. Thaler, Ismail Khosravi, M. T. Hirschmann, N. P. Kort, L. Zagra, J. A. Epinette, M. C. Liebensteiner

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Purpose: The aim of the present study was to evaluate the impact of the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic on joint arthroplasty service in Europe by conducting an online survey of arthroplasty surgeons. Methods: The survey was conducted in the European Hip Society (EHS) and the European Knee Associates (EKA). The survey consisted of 20 questions (single, multiple choice, ranked). Four topics were addressed: (1) origin and surgical experience of the participant (four questions); (2) potential disruption of arthroplasty surgeries (12 questions); (3) influence of the COVID-19 pandemic on the particular arthroplasty surgeon (four questions); (4) a matrix provided 14 different arthroplasty surgeries and the participant was asked to state whether dedicated surgery was stopped, delayed or cancelled. Results: Two-hundred and seventy-two surgeons (217 EHS, 55 EKA) from 40 different countries participated. Of the respondents, 25.7% stated that all surgeries were cancelled in their departments, while 68.4% responded that elective inpatient procedures were no longer being performed. With regard to the specific surgical procedures, nearly all primary TJA were cancelled (92.6%) as well as aseptic revisions (94.7%). In most hospitals, periprosthetic fractures (87.2%), hip arthroplasty for femoral neck fractures and septic revisions for acute infections (75.8%) were still being performed. Conclusion: During the current 2020 COVID-19 pandemic, we are experiencing a near-total shutdown of TJA. A massive cutback was observed for primary TJA and revision TJA, even in massively failed TJA with collapse, dislocation, component failure or imminent dislocation. Only life-threatening pathologies like periprosthetic fractures and acute septic TJA are currently undergoing surgical treatment. Level of evidence: V.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1712-1719
Number of pages8
JournalKnee Surgery, Sports Traumatology, Arthroscopy
Volume28
Issue number6
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Jun 1 2020

Keywords

  • Coronavirus disease 2019
  • COVID-19
  • Disruption
  • Health care
  • Orthopaedic surgery
  • Pandemic
  • SARS-CoV-2
  • Severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2
  • Total joint arthroplasty

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery
  • Orthopedics and Sports Medicine

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