Does the option to keep explanted orthopaedic trauma implants influence patient satisfaction and perception of care? Results of a survey study Journal Article uri icon
  • OBJECTIVE: Orthopaedic trauma implants may be electively explanted after fracture healing; reasons include symptomatic implants, cosmetic/functional concerns, or personal expectations. Certain institutions provide the option to keep implants after removal, although this has been retracted in others. This study examines patients' desire for return of implants, reasons for desiring return, and influence of return on perceptions of care. METHODS: A cohort of adult patients who underwent elective orthopaedic implant removal by a single surgeon at a Level I trauma center between 2008 and 2019, with the option to keep their removed implants, was identified. Surveys were sent to patients with contact information. Demographics, reasons for removal, satisfaction, and perceptions of care were studied. RESULTS: The overall response rate was 47.4% (117 of 247). Respondents' mean age was 46.9 years, and 50% were female. Ninety-one percent kept their implants. Eighty-nine percent of patients felt that removal achieved their desired outcome, with decreasing pain cited as primary motivation for explantation (62%). Forty-five percent reported a strong desire to keep their implants, most commonly to show to family (49%). Seventy-four percent were happy to have this option. Thirty-seven percent of patients reported respecting their provider more for having this option, and 27% reported that this positively impacted their satisfaction. CONCLUSIONS: Patients perceive elective implant removal as highly effective. A majority were pleased to have the option to keep their implants, and many reported increased respect and satisfaction. Thus, providing patients with this option should be strongly considered to honor patient choice and optimize outcomes when feasible.

  • Link to Article
    publication date
  • 2023
  • published in
  • Orthopedics
  • Patient Satisfaction
  • Questionnaires
  • Surgery
  • Additional Document Info
  • 37
  • issue
  • 7