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Identifying patients at high risk for total hip replacement
Date:11/28/2007

Osteoarthritis (OA) of the hip is a growing problem that will continue to increase as the population ages. Previous studies have reported on risk factors for developing OA, but few have examined the factors that might predict its prognosis. A new study published in the December issue of Arthritis Care & Research (http://www.interscience.wiley.com/journal/arthritiscare) examined patients with hip pain to determine their disease progression and to find out how many underwent total hip replacement (THR) over the course of several years.

Led by Sita M.A. Bierma-Zeinstra and Annet M. Lievense of Erasmus Medical Center, Rotterdam, The Netherlands, the study included 227 patients who visited their general practitioners in 1996 because of hip pain. Patients were questioned about the severity of their hip pain and their general health, underwent a physical exam, had X-rays of the pelvic area and sonograms of the hip area. Three years later, the same patients underwent follow-up, during which they were interviewed in person about the progression of their hip pain and whether or not they received a THR. In addition, their OA was assessed using the WOMAC Osteoarthritis Index. After another three years, a comparable follow-up was carried out using a survey that was mailed to the patients.

The results showed that after three years, 12 percent of the patients underwent a THR because of severe pain and/or disability due to hip OA. After six years, this number increased to 36 percent. In addition, another 3 percent to 5 percent had severe pain or disability due to the condition. Being at least 60 years old, morning stiffness, pain in the groin, restricted extension and painful rotation of the hip joint were all associated with an increased risk for undergoing THR.

The researchers note that while an earlier analysis of their data did not indicate an association between age and progr
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Contact: Amy Molnar
amolnar@wiley.com
Wiley-Blackwell
Source:Eurekalert

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