Different methods of drainage have been used in patients with osteoarthritis after total knee arthroplasty (TKA), but the ideal strategy is controversial. This retrospective case-control study reported a technique of 12-hour natural drainage and aimed to confirm its efficacy and safety in the treatment for blood loss following TKA.
There were 231 patients divided into three groups who underwent TKA from January 2014 to July 2017: 76 patients underwent 12-hour natural drainage in Group A, 80 patients underwent 4-hour clamping drainage in Group B, and 75 patients underwent continuous drainage in Group C. All perioperative clinical data were reviewed for statistical analysis.
The drainage volume and total blood loss after TKA were significantly lower in Group A than that in the other two groups ( P<0.05), and serum level of hemoglobin was significantly higher in Group A than that in the other two groups ( P<0.05). The maximum of active motion of the knee was greater in Group C at 2 days ( P<0.05). Significantly more patients in Group C required blood transfusions ( P<0.05). No difference was found in the complication rate among the three groups.
The 12-hour natural drainage is an effective technique for reducing blood loss for patients following TKA. Compared with temporary clamping drainage and continuous negative pressure drainage, 12-hour natural drainage decreases blood loss, reduces post-operative transfusion requirements, and does not increase the risk of complications. Therefore, this technique of 12-hour natural drainage is recommended to be used in patients after TKA.