Passive ankle motion and calf massage without anticoagulation therapy after total hip arthroplasty: A retrospective study

J Orthop Sci. 2020 Dec 18:S0949-2658(20)30337-7. doi: 10.1016/j.jos.2020.11.001. Online ahead of print.


BACKGROUND: It has been previously reported that manual calf massage and passive ankle motion after total hip arthroplasty could reduce the incidence of venous thromboembolism. However, a combination of chemical and mechanical prophylaxes was employed. In this study, we aimed to examine the effect of mechanical prevention without pharmacological antithrombotic intervention.

METHODS: Of the 313 patients who underwent unilateral primary total hip arthroplasty and received passive ankle motion and calf massage postoperatively at our hospital between January 2015 and December 2019, 261 (58 men, 203 women; mean age 62.1 years) were included in this retrospective study. Pharmacological anticoagulation therapy was administered in 176 patients (combination group); 137 patients only underwent calf massage and passive ankle motion without anticoagulation therapy (single group). The study outcomes were operation time, the incidence of deep vein thrombosis, pulmonary thromboembolism, intraoperative bleeding, estimated actual blood loss, blood transfusion, and major bleeding.

RESULTS: No significant differences were found in sex, age, side, platelet counts, activated partial thromboplastin time, prothrombin time, prothrombin time – International Normalized Ratio, intraoperative blood loss, estimated blood loss, and operation time. Moreover, the incidence of deep vein thrombosis, pulmonary thromboembolism, and intraoperative bleeding was not significantly different between the groups (deep vein thrombosis 4.0% vs. 6.3%, p = 0.244; pulmonary thromboembolism 0.7% vs. 0%, p = 0.548; and intraoperative bleeding 394 ± 173.6 ml vs. 365.4 ± 168.5 ml, p = 0.550). However, estimated actual blood loss and postoperative bleeding differed between the groups (eABL 996.6 ± 348.3 ml vs. 858.5 ± 269.6 ml, p = 0.003; postoperative bleeding 601.8 ± 330.0 ml vs. 492.1 ± 277.1 ml, p = 0.016), and both increased in the combination group. No major bleeding was noted in the two groups.

CONCLUSION: Postoperative anticoagulant therapy does not have to be routinely used if mechanical prophylaxis is performed in patients without deep vein thrombosis before total hip arthroplasty.

PMID:33349544 | DOI:10.1016/j.jos.2020.11.001