Most of the more than 1 million hip and knee joint replacement surgeries done nationally each year are successful. They offer patients years of trouble-free use and a return to regular activities of daily living. However, the most recent statistics show about 7.5 percent of patients will experience problems following joint replacement surgery requiring replacement of the artificial joint before the natural end of its life expectancy.
In an effort to continually improve surgical outcomes, Beaumont Health System has taken the added step of joining the American Joint Replacement Registry. The AJRR is an independent, not-for-profitdatabase designed to store comprehensive data about joint replacement procedures that can be shared nationally.
“Joining the registry will help ensure that we can continue to provide Beaumont patients with the highest quality care possible,” says Kevin Baker, Ph.D., manager, Orthopaedic Research Laboratories at Beaumont, Royal Oak. “By participating with other hospitals in sharing information about artificial joint performance and physician and patient experiences, we can help joint replacement procedures become safer and more cost effective, while optimizing our own patient experience.”
The AJRR serves as a clearinghouse for information about joint replacements performed at Beaumont and 81 other member medical centers throughout the country. The AJRR carefully monitors an artificial joint throughout a recipient’s lifetime through a database containing information about the patient, the surgeon who performed the procedure and the medical center where the procedure took place.
The data helps doctors identify performance trends in replacement joints, steering them towards the most reliable products. The data also helps joint manufacturers continually improve future generations of implants. This reduces health care costs associated with revision procedures and follow-up care.
“Registries for joint replacement procedures and other medical procedures and conditions have proven to be effective tools in improving patient outcomes and reducing complications that can occur both during and following surgical procedures,” said David G. Lewallen, M.D., chairman of the AJRR Board of Directors. “In fact, in countries where registries have been created and used, revision rates have decreased significantly.”