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Before joint-replacement surgery, be prepared for some tough questions

Palm Beach Daily News reported that new insights into patient satisfaction over the past decade are causing joint replacement surgeons to dig deeper into a patient's motivations in order to ensure end results will fit with the patient's definition of success.

Douglas E. Padgett, MD, chief of the adult reconstruction and joint replacement service at HSS, explained that during intake, he asks patients if they can walk a reasonable distance, if they're taking pain medication and if they continue to exercise. 

For those who have continual resting pain, joint replacement surgery can be a "no-brainer", according to Dr. Padgett.

Survey data has revealed that as many as 15-20 percent of knee replacement patients are less than satisfied after surgery, compared to only 5-7 percent after hip replacements.

The article noted that HSS uses a new computer-based tool that can predict a patient's satisfaction rate three to six months after surgery and considers factors such as age, socio-economic status, body mass index, social history, marital status and overall psycho-social health.

"It helps you make a decision on whether now is the right time to consider this intervention," said Dr. Padgett. "I think it's an extremely powerful tool."

Read the full article at PalmBeachDailyNews.com. This also appeared in the April 8, 2018 print edition.

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