In the largest study of its kind, researchers from the Musculoskeletal Research Unit at the University of Bristol have identified the most important risk factors for developing severe infection after knee replacement. Patients who are under 60 years of age, males, those with chronic pulmonary disease, diabetes, liver disease, and a higher body mass index are at increased risk of having the joint replacement redone (known as revision) due to infection.
The research, which follows their work on hip replacement published last year [20 November 2018], also showed that some patients are at higher risk of early infection whilst others are more prone to late infection after knee replacement. The study analysed data from over 670,000 primary hip replacement patients, with 3,659 requiring revision for infection.
The study, published in The Lancet Infectious Diseases today [Wednesday 17 April], conducted as part of the INFORM research programme funded by the National Institute for Health Research (NIHR) and the NIHR Bristol Biomedical Research Centre (BRC), considered the risk of infection following first-time (primary) knee replacement.