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Knee-Replacement Surgery As an Outpatient Procedure?

According to David Urbach, MD, MSc, Toronto Women’s College Hospital surgeon-in-chief, hospital beds in Ontario, Canada and beyond are in short supply. Surgeries that require multi-night stays are often cancelled due to these hospital bed shortages.

In the US, same-day joint-replacement surgery is already becoming more and more commonplace, but in Canada, the hospital bed shortage is causing organizations like the Canadian Orthopaedic Association to push for joint replacements in the ambulatory setting to become the standard for a subset of patients that fit the criteria for accelerated recovery requirements.

While there are obvious benefits to having patients recovering in their own homes quickly after surgeries, there are critics who cite the risks of discharging patients too quickly. Click here to review an article in CMAJ that discusses studies that look at cost and efficacy of total knee replacement outpatient procedures.