The principal objective of the present study was to compare rates of postoperative discomfort after anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) reconstruction between inpatient (In) and outpatient (Out) management.
Patients and method
A single-surgeon non-randomized prospective comparative study included patients undergoing primary surgery for isolated ACL tear by short hamstring graft in 2012–13. The Out group comprised patients eligible for and consenting to outpatient surgery and the In group, those not eligible or not consenting. The principal assessment criterion was onset of at least 1 symptom of postoperative discomfort (SPD): anxiety, nausea and vomiting, malaise, vertigo or stomach pain, between postoperative days 0 and 3. Secondary assessment criteria were difficulty in getting to sleep, getting up during the night, regular walking or going out, number of episodes of knee pain and waking because of pain. All criteria were assessed on-line by the patient.
One hundred and thirty-three patients filled out the questionnaire, 70 in the Out group and 63 in the In group; 42 females, 91 males; mean age, 30±9 years. Between D0 and D3, the proportion of patients with ≥l SPD was comparable between groups (Out 37% vs In 41%, P=0.62). Out-group patients had significantly less difficulty sleeping the first postoperative night (P=0.01), got up significantly more often during the first night after surgery (P<0.0001), more often walked regularly on day 1 (P=0.03), and were significantly less often woken by pain during the first night (P=0.003). Risk factors for SPD were female gender (OR=4.8±1.9) and postoperative complications (OR=3.8±2.5).
Patients undergoing ACL reconstruction on an outpatient basis did not show more symptoms of postoperative discomfort than those managed as conventional inpatients.
Level of evidence
IV; prospective comparative study.Le texte complet de cet article est disponible en PDF.
Keywords : Outpatient surgery, Anterior cruciate ligament reconstruction, Symptoms of postoperative discomfort