Preoperative psychosocial factors predicting patient’s functional recovery after total knee or total hip arthroplasty: a systematic review

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To evaluate the predictive value of preoperative psychosocial factors on the perceived and observed postoperative patient’s functional recovery during the post-hospital phase and up to 12 months after hospital discharge of patients who underwent total knee or total hip arthroplasty.


A systematic review was performed. MEDLINE, CINAHL, EMBASE and PsychINFO were systematically screened in order to find prospective longitudinal studies. Risk of bias was assessed using a modified version of a 27-item checklist for prognostic studies, as previously used by Veerbeek. A qualitative analysis was performed using the method of Zwikker.


A total of 26 studies, with a total of 11,020 patients, were included. In total, 22 studies were judged as having a high risk of bias. Overall, no longitudinal association with perceived or observed functional recovery was found in all of the seven preoperative psychosocial categories: A: mental well-being, B: cognitions, C: beliefs, D: expectations, E: coping, F: social support or G: personality traits in total joint arthroplasty. Mental well-being seems to be the exception in one time period (>6 weeks through ≤3 months) and change score in observed functional recovery, but only in patients awaiting total knee arthroplasty (100% and 75% of the variables were significantly and consistently associated, respectively).


Overall, the results of this systematic review suggest that there is no longitudinal association between preoperative psychosocial factors and perceived or observed patient’s postoperative functional recovery after total joint arthroplasty. The psychological category mental well-being is related to observed postoperative recovery >6 weeks through ≤3 months and to change score after total knee arthroplasty.

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