Sexual function improves significantly after hip or knee replacement surgery

March 19, 2013

Osteoarthritis of the hip or knee, affecting millions of Americans each year, is known to limit sexual activity. New research presented today at the 2013 Annual Meeting of the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons (AAOS) found that total hip (THR) or total knee replacement (TKR) surgery improves sexual function in 90 percent of patients.

In the study, 147 patients under age 70, scheduled for primary THR or TKR, agreed to participate in a study requiring the completion of questionnaires prior to surgery, at six months post surgery, and at one year post surgery. Sixty-five percent of patients returned all three surveys.

The group of patients included 68 men and 78 women with a mean age of 57.7 years. Among the results:

  • Sixty-seven percent of the patients reported physical problems with sexual activity prior to surgery – 67 percent pain; 36 percent, stiffness; 49 percent, reduced libido; and 14 percent, inability to attain proper position.
  • Ninety-one percent of participating patients reported psychological issues related to their – 91 percent diminished general well being, and 53 percent, diminished sexual self image.
Following the surgery, 42 percent of patients reported an improvement in ; 41 percent, increased intercourse duration; and 41 percent, increased intercourse frequency. Eighty-four percent of patients reported improvement in their general well being, and 55 percent in their sexual . Sixteen percent of patients reported that their joint adversely affected their , primarily due to a fear of damaging the replaced joint.

Overall, 90 percent of THR and TKR patients reported improved overall sexual function, with a slightly higher rate of improvement after THR than TKR. More females reported improvement after THR than males.

"This study emphasizes the importance of including sexuality and sexual activity as an important component of evaluating the functional outcome of total hip and total knee (replacement)," said principal investigator Jose A Rodriguez MD, orthopaedic surgeon and chief, Center for Joint Preservation and Reconstruction at Lenox Hill Hospital in New York.

Hip or does "offer improvement in sexual activity and overall sexuality to patients after surgery, especially if (sexuality) is affected before surgery," said Dr. Rodriguez.

As some patients reported a fear of damaging their new hip or knee as a reason to limit sexual activity following surgery, "it is important for the health care provider to discuss the functional status of each patient in terms of and overall sexuality," said Dr. Rodriguez. "This could be in the form of a one-on-one discussion with patients, or (the provision) of information booklets, or both if necessary, to effectively determine and address this fear."

Explore further: Living in a sunny climate does not improve vitamin D levels in hip fracture patients

More information: www.aaos.org/

Related Stories

Living in a sunny climate does not improve vitamin D levels in hip fracture patients

March 19, 2013
While it is well known that a majority of hip fracture patients of all ages and both sexes have insufficient or deficient levels of vitamin D, a new study presented today at the 2013 Annual Meeting of the American Academy ...

Antidepressant use linked with less patient satisfaction after hip replacement

February 8, 2012
Patients taking antidepressants up to three years prior to undergoing a total hip replacement (THR) were more likely to report greater pain before and after surgery and less satisfaction with their procedure, according to ...

Post surgical phone support improves outcome following knee replacement

February 7, 2012
Poor emotional health and morbid obesity are associated with less functional gain following total knee replacement (TKR) surgery. In the new study, "Can Telephone Support During Post-TKR Rehabilitation Improve Post-op Function: ...

Increased heart attack risk associated with total hip, knee replacement surgeries

July 23, 2012
Total hip replacement (THR) and total knee replacement (TKR) surgeries were associated with increased risk of acute myocardial infarction (AMI, heart attack) in the first two weeks after the surgical procedures, according ...

Recommended for you

Defining optimal opioid pain medication prescription length following surgery

September 27, 2017
A new study led by researchers at the Center for Surgery and Public Health at Brigham and Women's Hospital analyzed opioid prescription data from the Department of Defense Military Health System Data Repository, identifying ...

Is older blood OK to use in a transfusion?

September 27, 2017
(HealthDay)—Using older red blood cells to give transfusions to critically ill patients doesn't appear to affect their risk of dying, Australian researchers report.

One weight-loss surgery shows lasting results

September 21, 2017
(HealthDay)—Obesity surgery can have long-lasting effects on weight and the risk of developing type 2 diabetes and high blood pressure, a new study finds.

Hold the phone: An ambulance might lower your chances of surviving some injuries

September 20, 2017
Victims of gunshots and stabbings are significantly less likely to die if they're taken to the trauma center by a private vehicle than ground emergency medical services (EMS), according to results of a new analysis.

Surgeons have major influence on breast cancer treatment

September 13, 2017
A woman's choice of surgeon plays a significant role in whether she's likely to receive an increasingly popular aggressive breast cancer surgery.

Some thyroid cancer patients can safely delay surgery

September 4, 2017
Most people diagnosed with cancer want to start treatment as soon as possible, for fear that delaying care will allow their tumor to grow out of control.

0 comments

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.