Complication rates following total ankle arthroplasty in inpatient versus outpatient populations: a systematic review & meta-analysis
Albright RH, Rodela RJ, Nabili P, Gentchos CE, Summers NJ. Complication Rates Following Total Ankle Arthroplasty in Inpatient versus Outpatient Populations: A Systematic Review & Meta-Analysis. J Foot Ankle Surg. 2021;60(1):61-66. doi:10.1053/j.jfas.2020.08.007
Total ankle arthroplasty (TAA) is used as an alternative to ankle arthrodesis for adults with severe ankle arthritis. Numerous orthopedic centers have entered the healthcare market offering fast-tracked joint replacement protocols, meanwhile, TAA has been excluded from these joint centers, and is primarily performed in the inpatient setting. The purpose of this study is to examine short-term complications in the inpatient and outpatient settings following TAA using a systematic review and quantitative analysis. We considered all studies examining short-term complications following TAA performed in the inpatient versus outpatient setting occuring within 1 year of the index operation. We summarized data using a pooled relative risk and random effects model. A pooled sensitivity analysis was performed for studies with data on complication rates for inpatient or outpatient populations, which did not have a control group. The quality of included studies was assessed using the Cochrane risk of bias tool. Nine studies were included in the quantitative analysis, with 4 studies in the final meta-analysis. Subjects undergoing inpatient surgery experienced a 5-times higher risk of short-term complications compared to the outpatient group (risk ratio 5.27, 95% confidence interval 3.31, 8.42). Results did not change after sensitivity analysis (inpatient weighted mean complication rate: 9.62% vs outpatient weighted mean 5.02%, p value <.001). The overall level of evidence of included studies was level III, with a moderate to high risk of bias. Outpatient TAAs do not appear to pose excess complication risks compared to inpatient procedures, and may therefore be a reasonable addition to experienced centers that have established a fast-track outpatient total joint protocol.