In The News: June 2010

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A new study reveals that doctor and patient expectations about knee and hip replacements are often not aligned. The study, unveiled during a March meeting of the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons, included 42 patients who were scheduled to receive a hip or knee replacement by a dedicated hip or knee surgeon. After comparing expected outcomes, researchers found meaningful disagreement in 68 percent of the patients, with 53 percent of the patients expectations exceeding the expectations of their surgeons. The take-home message for surgeons, said researchers, is that educational programs, such as a preoperative class, be used to better align patient-surgeon expectations. For the patient, said the researchers, pain relief and function expectations should be discussed with the surgeon and in the class before undergoing a total joint replacement to make sure that the expectations of the physician and the patient are similar.
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