Smoking Is Associated with Increased Surgical Complications Following Total Shoulder Arthroplasty: An Analysis of 14,465 Patients


The purpose of this study was to evaluate the association between smoking and postoperative complications following total shoulder arthroplasty. We hypothesized that active smokers would have significantly greater postoperative medical and surgical complications.


The American College of Surgeons National Surgical Quality Improvement Program database was queried for patients who underwent total shoulder arthroplasties from 2005 through 2016. Patients were stratified based on tobacco use within the past year. Logistic regression was used to assess the relationship between smoking status and postoperative medical and surgical complications. Multivariate logistic regression was used to adjust for demographic and comorbid factors.


We identified 14,465 patients, of whom 10.5% were active smokers. Smokers were more likely to be younger, to be female patients, and to have a lower body mass index compared with nonsmokers (P < .001). Univariate analysis demonstrated that smoking was not associated with postoperative medical complications (P > .05) but was associated with an increased risk of overall surgical complications (odds ratio [OR], 3.259; 95% confidence interval [CI], 1.861-5.709; P < .001). Multivariate modeling showed that smoking increased the risk of wound complications (adjusted OR, 7.564; 95% CI, 2.128-26.889; P = .002) and surgical-site infections (adjusted OR, 1.927; 95% CI, 1.023-3.630; P = .042).


This study demonstrates that smoking is associated with an increased risk of surgical complications following total shoulder arthroplasty. On the basis of our available data, medical complications are not significantly increased. This information can help risk stratify patients prior to their procedures.

 2019 Sep 10. pii: S1058-2746(19)30507-5. doi: 10.1016/j.jse.2019.07.012. [Epub ahead of print]