Ritesh Shah, MD, chief of orthopedic surgery at Chicago-based Advocate Illinois Masonic Medical Center, said adopting new technology and having a multimodal pain pathway were among seven factors needed for the best outcomes in outpatient total joint replacements.
Note: Response was lightly edited for style and clarity.
Dr. Ritesh Shah: It has become almost a necessity for surgeons to do outpatient joint replacements for various reasons, including promising safety and quality data, patient preference, insurance preference, and COVID-19. Below are a few important principles that surgeons can use to be successful in outpatient joint replacements in 2021.
- An objective algorithmic patient selection tool is very useful to minimize complications and readmissions. The Aria platform has been recently released to help guide surgeons adopting same-day joint replacements.
- A methodical patient care pathway is needed to reduce gaps in patient care, promote a team approach to patient care, and result in a quicker recovery with greater patient satisfaction.
- A reproducible multimodal pain pathway can reduce narcotic consumption and promote early mobility.
- Surgeons should have blood-conservation and tissue-preserving techniques.
- Surgeons should have a choice of implants and instruments that work well in an efficient and minimally invasive manner without sacrificing quality or longevity.
- Adoption of new technology and digital care is the future specifically as it relates to surgical precision and efficiency and equally importantly patient care and outcome data analysis.
- Surgeons should have a willingness to gain a thorough understanding of the whole process including preoperative, operative and postoperative care along with financials, sterilization, storage, staffing and outcome data analysis.