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Project status: Complete.

Total knee and hip replacements (TKR, THR) are some of the most commonly performed orthopedic surgeries for individuals with arthritis and improve quality of life for many. While these joint replacement procedures remain prevalent, there is no clear consensus on how to best prevent infection at the artificial joint site following the first year post-surgery. Specifically, data varies on whether prescribing prophylactic antibiotics prior to dental procedures in TKR and THR patients provides protection that outweighs the costs and risks of the antibiotics themselves.

The SHielD (Study of Hip and Knee Replacement Infection Defense) survey study aims to clarify the current state of antibiotic-prescribing practices for TKR and THR recipients undergoing dental procedures. Further, the study investigates beliefs regarding dental antibiotic prophylaxis among joint replacement recipients. SHielD participants will be TKR or THR patients from the Brigham who will receive a mailed study questionnaire. Analysis of questionnaire results will shed light on how preexisting beliefs, comorbidities (specifically rheumatoid arthritis and diabetes), past medical history, number of years after surgery, and demographic characteristics may influence the prophylactic use of antibiotics prior to dental procedures in THR and TKR patients.

This study is supported by OrACORe internal funding.

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