St. Luke’s Hospital has become a member of the American Joint Replacement Registry (AJRR)

AJRR is an independent, not-for-profit database designed to store comprehensive data about joint replacement procedures and to help physicians and artificial joint manufacturers improve the experiences of patients who undergo joint replacement surgery.

 More than a million hip and knee replacements are performed each year in the U.S., and that number is expected to increase as more and more men and women remain active as they get older. The lion’s share of replacement surgeries are successful, offering patients years of trouble-free use and helping patients resume their regular activities of daily living. But a few patients – about 7.5 percent, according to 2006 figures – experience problems following surgery that require the artificial joint to be replaced.

 “Joining the AJRR will help ensure that we can continue to provide patients with the best care possible,” said Peg Pickering, UnityPoint Health St. Luke’s surgical services director. “By participating with other hospitals in sharing information about artificial joint performance and physician and patient experiences, we can help joint replacement procedures become safer nationwide, while optimizing our own patients’ experiences here at St. Luke’s.”

The AJRR serves as a central clearinghouse for information about joint replacements performed at St. Luke’s and other member hospitals and medical centers throughout the country that participate in the registry. The AJRR aims to carefully monitor the artificial joint throughout a recipient’s lifetime in a database containing information about the patient, the surgeon who performed the procedure and the hospital or medical center where the procedure took place. The data collected will help doctors more quickly identify joints that are performing poorly, and will help them match patients, procedures and devices to ensure that every patient has the best experience possible.

 By offering a single source of data, doctors and other healthcare professionals who use the registry can easily access data from medical centers around the country and use that information to help them make more informed recommendations to their patients, ultimately improving patient care. Registry information about patient outcomes and experiences will also help artificial joint manufacturers improve their products and identify potentially faulty products, and can help reduce healthcare costs associated with replacement procedures and follow-up care. All data collected by the AJRR remains confidential to protect patient privacy.

 “Registries for joint replacement procedures and other medical procedures and conditions have proven to be effective tools in improving patient outcomes and reducing complications that can occur both during and following surgical procedures,” said William J. Maloney, MD, chairman of the AJRR Board of Directors. “In fact, in countries where registries have been created and used, revision rates have decreased significantly, resulting in substantial cost savings and a better overall patient experience.”

The American Joint Replacement Registry was founded in 2009 by the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons (AAOS) and other orthopaedic industry leaders and stakeholders, and began collecting data in 2011. The AJRR’s goal is to optimize patient outcomes through collection of data on all primary and revision total joint replacement procedures in the U.S. The mission of the registry is to enhance patient safety, improve quality of care and reduce the cost of care. For more information about the registry and its objectives, visit www.ajrr.net.