Introduction: When the postoperative outcome of primary total hip arthroplasty (THA) was compared with the direct anterior approach (DAA) and the posterior approach (PA), there was no significant difference of the clinical outcome at 6 months to 1 year after surgery in many studies. This study was performed to compare the medium-term outcome of THA via the DAA or PA and clarify which approach achieves better quality of life (QOL).
Methods: We investigated 61 hips receiving primary THA (30 via DAA and 31 via PA), using hip function scores such as the Harris Hip Score (HHS) and patient-reported outcomes such as the Western Ontario and McMaster Universities Osteoarthritis Index (WOMAC), the Japanese Orthopaedic Association Hip Disease Evaluation Questionnaire (JHEQ), and the Forgotten Joint Score-12 (FJS).
Results: The mean duration of postoperative follow-up was 36.8 months in the DAA group and 40.5 months in the PA group. There was no difference in preoperative or postoperative HHS between the two groups. Although there was no difference of postoperative WOMAC and JHEQ, the postoperative FJS-12 score was significantly higher in the DAA group than in the PA group (75.2 ± 15.9 versus 60.1 ± 24.4, p = 0.01).
Conclusion: When forgetting the artificial joint in daily life is the target, better QOL can be achieved by performing THA via the DAA.