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Comparison of Nonabsorbable and Absorbable Suture in Total Knee Arthroplasty

Shuguang Liu, Yunmei Wang, Ronak N. Kotian, Hui Li, Yufei Mi, Yumin Zhang, Xijing He

Department of Orthopedics, Second Affiliated Hospital, Xi’an Jiaotong University Health Science Center, Xi’an, Shaan’xi, China (mainland)

Med Sci Monit 2018; 24:7563-7569

DOI: 10.12659/MSM.910785

Available online:

Published: 2018-10-23

BACKGROUND: Wound closure of KA is important for postoperative rehabilitation. At present there is still no consensus on the best wound closure technique for KA. We performed the present study to determine whether absorbable suture is better than nonabsorbable suture in total knee arthroplasty (TKA).
MATERIAL AND METHODS: A total of 180 patients who underwent TKA were divided into 3 groups: 80 cases of nonabsorbable suture, 50 cases of 2-0 absorbable suture, and 50 cases of 4-0 absorbable suture. The time required for closure, frequency of gauze change, length of stay in hospital, adverse events, range of motion (ROM) after 3 months postoperatively, and VAS score of wounds were calculated. Comparison was made to explore any significant differences between different groups.
RESULTS: There were significant differences between the nonabsorbable group and the absorbable group with regards to closure time, frequency of gauze change, and hospital length of stay (LOS). Closure time was longer in the absorbable group than in the nonabsorbable group. Frequency of gauze change, hospital LOS, and adverse events were lower, and VAS was higher in the absorbable group. Closure time was longer in the 4-0 absorbable group than in the 2-0 group. There was no significant difference between the 4-0 group and 2-0 group in other variables. There was no significant difference in long-term ROM among all groups.
CONCLUSIONS: Absorbable suture in TKA reduces the incidence of fatty liquefaction, frequency of gauze change, and postoperative LOS. It improves the cosmetic appearance and overall reduces the economic cost. There was no significant effect on early and long-term functional ROM. In conclusion, absorbable suture can be used in TKA when appropriately indicated.

Keywords: Arthroplasty, Replacement, Knee, Cosmetic Techniques, Suture Techniques