JAAOS

JAAOS, Volume 23, No. suppl


A Clinical Perspective on Musculoskeletal Infection Treatment Strategies and Challenges

Orthopaedic implants improve the quality of life of patients, but the risk of postoperative surgical site infection poses formidable challenges for clinicians. Future directions need to focus on prevention and treatment of infections associated with common arthroplasty procedures, such as the hip, knee, and shoulder, and nonarthroplasty procedures, including trauma, foot and ankle, and spine. Novel prevention methods, such as nanotechnology and the introduction of antibiotic-coated implants, may aid in the prevention and early treatment of periprosthetic joint infections with goals of improved eradication rates and maintaining patient mobility and satisfaction.

      • Subspecialty:
      • General Orthopaedics

    Best Practices for Centers of Excellence in Addressing Periprosthetic Joint Infection

    Periprosthetic joint infection is a rare and devastating complication. Management of this complication often requires a multidisciplinary approach similar to that used for the care of patients with cancer. Several studies have reported better outcomes following total joint arthroplasties performed at specialized hospitals than those performed at general hospitals. Specialized institutions use care pathways that aid the multidisciplinary team in decision making. During the recent Musculoskeletal Infection symposium, specific issues were discussed with regard to the treatment of periprosthetic joint infection, including medical optimization, systematic approaches to infection management, and the importance of establishing registries to aid in the creation of Centers of Excellence. A Center of Excellence in periprosthetic infection could provide better overall outcomes with lower financial, physical, and emotional costs to patients.

        • Subspecialty:
        • General Orthopaedics

      Capturing Orthopaedic Surgical Site Infection Data and Assessing Dental Recommendations With Respect to Total Joint Arthroplasty

      Greater documentation of patient history and clinical course is crucial for identifying factors that can influence surgical outcomes. The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services have already begun public reporting of hospital data on readmission, complication, and infection rates and will soon launch a website to make physician-specific outcomes data public. The orthopaedic community has the opportunity to lead the way in ensuring that adequate and accurate data is collected to facilitate appropriate comparisons that are based on patients' true risk of complications and the complexity of treatment. Several studies have reported a link between oral pathogens and periprosthetic infection, although it remains unclear whether organisms unique to dental tissues are also present in osteoarthritic joints and tissues affected by periprosthetic joint infection. The American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons and the American Dental Association are aware of these concerns and have created guidelines for antibiotic prophylaxis in patients who have undergone total hip or knee arthroplasty and require high-risk dental procedures. Because these guidelines have received considerable criticism, recommendations that are based on scientific and case-controlled clinical studies and provide effective guidance on this important subject are needed.

          • Subspecialty:
          • General Orthopaedics

        Conventional Diagnostic Challenges in Periprosthetic Joint Infection

        Periprosthetic joint infection remains a clinical challenge with no benchmark for diagnosis. The diagnosis is based on many different clinical variables that may be difficult to interpret, especially in the setting of chronic systemic disease. Synovial fluid aspiration, diagnostic imaging, traditional culture, peripheral serum inflammatory markers, and intraoperative frozen sections each have their limitations but continue to be the mainstay for diagnosis of periprosthetic joint infection. As molecular- and biomarker-based technologies improve, the way we interpret and diagnose periprosthetic joint infection will ultimately change and may even improve diagnostic accuracy and turnaround time. Future research on this topic should be focused on improving diagnostic criteria for low-virulence organisms, improving interpretation of intraoperative frozen sections, and establishing improved synovial fluid and peripheral serum biomarker profiles for periprosthetic joint infection.

            • Subspecialty:
            • General Orthopaedics

          Molecular Diagnostics

          Orthopaedic infections are complex conditions that require immediate diagnosis and accurate identification of the causative organisms to facilitate appropriate management. Conventional methodologies for diagnosis of these infections sometimes lack accuracy or sufficient rapidity. Molecular diagnostics is an emerging area of bench-to-bedside research in orthopaedic infections. Examples of promising molecular diagnostics include measurement of a specific biomarker in the synovial fluid, polymerase chain reaction-based detection of bacterial genes, and metabolomic determination of responses to orthopaedic infection.

              • Subspecialty:
              • Basic Science

            Novel Developments in the Prevention, Diagnosis, and Treatment of Periprosthetic Joint Infections

            Periprosthetic joint infection (PJI) is one of the most challenging complications compromising the outcome of an otherwise successful operation. Considerable efforts have been invested in the recent years to address paradigm shifts in our understanding of the complex microbiological phenomena that contribute to the pathophysiology of PJI, such as microbial adherence, biofilm formation, and resistance to antibiotics. This article is an introduction to some of the recent advancements in the prevention, diagnosis, and treatment of PJI. It describes how industry, academic researchers, and government are increasing collaboration to address PJI through development of novel technologies, therapeutic strategies, and regulatory science that specifically target the unique biofilm-associated aspects of its pathogenesis.

                • Subspecialty:
                • General Orthopaedics

              Surgical Site Infection Risk Factors and Risk Stratification

              Preoperative identification of the risk factors for surgical site infection and patient risk stratification are essential for deciding whether surgery is appropriate, educating patients on their individual risk of complications, and managing postoperative expectations. Early identification of these factors is also necessary to help guide both patient medical optimization and perioperative care planning. Several resources are currently available to track and analyze healthcare-associated infections, including the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's National Healthcare Safety Network. In addition, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons are exploring collaborative opportunities for the codevelopment of a hip and/or knee arthroplasty national quality measure for periprosthetic joint infection.

                  • Subspecialty:
                  • General Orthopaedics

                The Economic Significance of Orthopaedic Infections

                Musculoskeletal infections are a leading cause of patient morbidity and rising healthcare expenditures. The incidence of musculoskeletal infections, including soft-tissue infections, periprosthetic joint infection, and osteomyelitis, is increasing. Cases involving both drug-resistant bacterial strains and periprosthetic joint infection in total hip and total knee arthroplasty are particularly costly and represent a growing economic burden for the American healthcare system. With the institution of the Affordable Care Act, there has been an increasing drive in the United States toward rewarding healthcare organizations for their quality of care, bundling episodes of care, and capitating approaches to managing populations. In current reimbursement models, complications following the index event, including infection, are not typically reimbursed, placing the burden of caring for infections on the physician, hospital, or accountable care organization. Without the ability to risk-stratify patient outcomes based on patient comorbidities that are associated with a higher incidence of musculoskeletal infection, healthcare organizations are disincentivized to care for moderate- to high-risk patients. Reducing the cost of treating musculoskeletal infection also depends on incentivizing innovations in infection prevention.

                    • Subspecialty:
                    • General Orthopaedics

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