Syracuse (WSYR-TV/ABC-TV) - A new study shows that one group of patients has a higher chance of having a heart attack than most other people.
Osteoarthritis is a disease that mostly affects hands, feet, the spine, and large joints that carry most of our weight – the hips and knees. For some patients, surgery may be necessary to put an end to the pain and suffering.
We’ve known for some time that those patients face a higher risk of heart attack after surgery, but a new study shows the link is stronger than previously believed.
Researchers collected data from 95,000 Dutch patients who underwent hip or knee replacement surgery.
They compared the results to similar patients who did not go under such operations. They found that patients 60 years or older who underwent hip replacement were 25 times more likely to have a heart attack within two weeks after surgery. It was 31 times more likely for those who received a new knee.
But after six weeks of surgery, the risk of a heart attack dropped. It was a half of a percent above normal for hip surgery and two tenths of a percent higher for knee surgery.
Patients who had a heart attack within a year before surgery had an increased risk of having another one. The advice to them is: Don’t have surgery if it can be avoided.