Journal of Shoulder and Elbow Surgery

Is outpatient shoulder arthroplasty safe? A systematic review and meta-analysis

Published:March 03, 2021DOI:


      Amid rising health care costs and recent advances in surgical and anesthetic protocols, the rate of outpatient joint arthroplasty has risen steadily in recent years. Although the safety of outpatient total knee arthroplasty and total hip arthroplasty has been well established, outpatient shoulder arthroplasty is still in its infancy. The purpose of this study was to synthesize the current literature and provide further data regarding the outcomes and safety of outpatient shoulder arthroplasty.


      A systematic review was conducted following the standard PRISMA (Preferred Reporting Items for Systematic Reviews and Meta-Analyses) guidelines. Included were studies that evaluated the outcomes of patients undergoing outpatient total shoulder arthroplasty (TSA) or reverse TSA. Meta-analysis was conducted using Mantel-Haenszel statistics to generate odds ratios (ORs) and their corresponding 95% confidence intervals (CIs) comparing outpatient and inpatient shoulder arthroplasty.


      Twelve studies were included, with a total of 194,513 patients, of whom 7162 were outpatients. Of the studies, 8 were level III and 4 were level IV. The average age of the outpatients was 66.6 years, and the average age of the inpatients was 70.1 years. The overall OR for complications was significantly lower in outpatients (OR, 0.40; 95% CI, 0.35-0.45) than in inpatients. There was no significant difference in rates of 90-day readmission (OR, 0.88; 95% CI, 0.75-1.03), revision (OR, 0.96; 95% CI, 0.65-1.41), and infection (OR, 0.93; 95% CI, 0.64-1.35) when comparing outpatients with inpatients.


      Outpatient TSA, in an appropriately selected patient population, is safe and results in comparable patient outcomes to those of inpatient shoulder arthroplasty. Given the expected increase in the number of patients requiring TSA, surgeons, hospital administrators, and insurance carriers should strongly consider the merits of a cost- and care-efficient approach to total shoulder replacement.

      Level of evidence


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