Contemporary Mortality Rate and Outcomes in Nonagenarians After Primary Total Knee Arthroplasty

Louis Dagneaux, Adam W. Amundson, Dirk R. Larson, Mark W. Pagnano, Daniel J. Berry, Matthew P. Abdel

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Background: Nonagenarians (90-99 years) have experienced the fastest percent growth in primary total knee arthroplasty (TKA) utilization recently. However, there are limited data on the results of the procedure in this population. The goals of this study are to determine the mortality rate, implant survivorship, clinical outcomes, and complications of primary TKAs in nonagenarians. Methods: Our institutional total joint registry was used to identify 105 nonagenarians who underwent 119 primary cemented TKAs for osteoarthritis between 1997 and 2017. Mean age was 92 years, with 58% being female. Mortality, revision, and reoperation were assessed using cumulative incidence with death as a competing risk and Cox regression methods. Clinical outcomes were assessed using Knee Society Scores. A posterior-stabilized design was used in 88%. Mean follow-up was 4 years. Results: The mortality rates were 0%, 2%, 9%, and 47% at 90 days, 1 year, 2 years, and 5 years, respectively. The 5-year cumulative incidences of any revision and reoperation were 0% and 3%, respectively. The reoperations included 2 internal fixations for periprosthetic fracture and 1 hardware removal. The mean Knee Society Score improved significantly from 34 preoperatively to 80 at 5 years (P < .001). The 5-year cumulative incidence of any nonmortality complication was 66%. The most common complications were urinary tract infections and retention (8%) in the early postoperative period, and acquired idiopathic stiffness (10%) later. Conclusion: Nonagenarians undergoing primary TKA had low mortality rates at 90 days (0%) and 1 year (2%) with substantial functional improvements. The cumulative incidences of revision and reoperation were low at 5 years. Level of Evidence: Level IV, retrospective cohort.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)3456-3462
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of Arthroplasty
Issue number10
StatePublished - Oct 2021


  • TKA
  • elderly
  • geriatric
  • reoperation
  • revision

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Orthopedics and Sports Medicine


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