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Enhanced recovery after surgery combined with quantitative rehabilitation training in early rehabilitation after total knee replacement: a randomized controlled trial [with consumer summary]
Jiao S, Feng Z, Huang J, Dai T, Liu R, Meng Q
European Journal of Physical and Rehabilitation Medicine 2024 Feb;60(1):74-83
clinical trial
7/10 [Eligibility criteria: No; Random allocation: Yes; Concealed allocation: Yes; Baseline comparability: Yes; Blind subjects: No; Blind therapists: No; Blind assessors: Yes; Adequate follow-up: Yes; Intention-to-treat analysis: No; Between-group comparisons: Yes; Point estimates and variability: Yes. Note: Eligibility criteria item does not contribute to total score] *This score has been confirmed*

BACKGROUND: The number of patients undergoing total knee replacement (TKR) is increasing yearly; however, there is still a relative lack of specific, individualized, and standardized protocols for functional exercise after TKR. Quantitative rehabilitation training was developed to improve the recovery of postoperative joint function, increase patient satisfaction, shorten the length of the hospital stay, improve the quality of life, and promote rapid patient recovery. AIM: We aimed to compare the effectiveness of quantitative rehabilitation training based on the enhanced recovery after surgery (ERAS) concept with conventional rehabilitation training in the early rehabilitation of patients with TKR. DESIGN: This was a single-centre, prospective, randomized controlled trial. SETTING: Inpatient department. POPULATION: Participants were patients who underwent unilateral total knee replacement. METHODS: Based on the ERAS concept, a quantitative rehabilitation training program was developed for the quantitative group, and the control group underwent conventional rehabilitation training. Seventy-eight patients undergoing TKR were randomly divided into two blinded groups: the quantitative rehabilitation group and the conventional rehabilitation group. The analysis was performed according to per-protocol practice. The primary outcome metric was the Hospital for Special Surgery Knee Score (HSS Score), and secondary outcomes included patient satisfaction, Visual Analog Pain Score (VAS), time to get out of bed for the first time after surgery, 6-minute-walk test (6MWT), quality-of-life score (SF-36), and number of days in the hospital. The incidence of postoperative complications was also recorded. RESULTS: There was no significant difference in HSS scores between the two groups before surgery (p = 0.967), but the quantitative rehabilitation training group had significantly higher scores at two weeks (p = 0.031), 3 months (p < 0.01), and 12 months (p < 0.01) after surgery than did the conventional rehabilitation training group, and both groups had higher HSS scores than before surgery. The quantitative training group had significantly higher VAS scores at 24 hours and three days postoperatively than the conventional training group (p < 0.01), while there was no statistical significance at any other time points. The quantitative rehabilitation group had an earlier time to get out of bed for the first time after surgery (p < 0.01), a longer 6MWT distance (p = 0.028), and higher patient satisfaction and quality of life scores (SF-36) (p < 0.01) that did the control group. The number of days in the hospital was lower in the quantitative training group than in the control group (p < 0.001). There was no significant difference in the incidence of postoperative complications between the two groups. CONCLUSIONS: Compared with conventional rehabilitation training, quantitative rehabilitation training based on the ERAS concept was found to be safe and effective and can accelerate the recovery of joint function after surgery, shorten hospitalization time, improve patient satisfaction, and promote rapid recovery.

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