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Importance: Lateral unicompartmental knee arthroplasty (UKA) is a surgical option for patients with isolated lateral osteoarthritis however, the procedure has higher revision rates than medial UKA. The reason for this remains unclear; therefore, a better understanding of the indications for lateral UKA revision is needed. Aim: The primary aim of this systematic review was to identify revision indications for lateral UKA. Secondary aims were to further investigate if revision indications were influenced by implant design and time from surgery. Evidence review: A systematic literature review was performed according to the PRISMA 2020 guidelines. Search was performed in January 2022 in MedLine, EMBASE, CINAHL and the Cochrane Library using the keywords “knee arthroplasty”, “unicompartmental”, “reoperation”, synonyms and abbreviations. Articles published in 2000–2021 that were at least level III retrospective cohort studies with at least 10 lateral UKAs and reported all failure modes were included. Risk of bias was assessed using the ROBINS-I tool. Revision indications, patient characteristics, study design, implant types and time to failure were extracted from the selected studies. Collated data were tabulated and differences were tested using Chi-square or Fisher's exact test. Findings: A total of 29 cohort and 4 registry studies that included 7,668 UKAs met the inclusion criteria. Studies were judged as having moderate or severe risk of bias; this was associated with the retrospective nature of studies required to investigate long-term outcomes of knee arthroplasty. The main indications for lateral UKA revision were OA progression (35%), aseptic loosening (17%) and bearing dislocation (14%). The incidence of revision was similar for mobile-bearing implants (7.6%) and fixed-bearing (6.4%). For mobile-bearing implants, there was introduction of bearing dislocations as an additional mode of failure (24% cf. 0%, p < 0.001). For fixed-bearing implants, the incidence of revision was higher for all-poly-ethylene (13.9%) than metal-backed (1.8%) tibial components. Early lateral UKA failures were associated with bearing dislocations (sequential decrease from 69% under 6 months to 0% 10+ years, p < 0.001), whereas late failures were associated with OA progression (sequential increase from 0% under 6 months to 100% > 10+ years, p < 0.01). Compared with medial UKA, OA progression (41% cf. 30%, p = 0.004), malalignment (2.7% cf. 0.8%, p = 0.02), instability (4% cf. 1%, p = 0.02) and bearing dislocations (20% cf. 10%, p < 0.001) were more common for lateral UKA. Conclusions and relevance: OA progression, aseptic loosening and bearing dislocation were the three main revision indications for lateral UKA. Compared to medial UKA, OA progression, malalignment, instability and bearing dislocations were more common revision indications for lateral UKA. Higher survivorship of metal-backed fixed-bearing implants was found. The findings suggest that the outcomes of lateral UKA may be improved with more optimal alignment, gap balancing and patient selection. Level of evidence: Level III systematic review.

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Journal article


Journal of isakos

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