Orthopedic & Muscular System: Current Research

Orthopedic & Muscular System: Current Research
Open Access

ISSN: 2161-0533



The Waiting Game: A Primary Care Intervention to Improve Access to Specialist Care to Patients with Osteoarthritis

Laura Katherine Churchill, Dianne Bryant, Robert Giffin and Steven MacDonald

Osteoarthritis (OA) commonly presents in the knee, contributing to pain and impairment in those affected. Given appropriate candidacy, surgical treatment for end-stage knee OA such as total knee replacement (TKR) and high tibial osteotomy (HTO) are highly successful with negligible risk. Just as the population has aged over the past decade, so too has the demand for surgical treatment of OA increasing wait times across Canada.

Cipriano et al. identified that wait times for TKR in Ontario are longer than clinically appropriate. Several North American studies have demonstrated that general practitioner referrals to specialists do not result in subsequent surgery. Targeting increasing the proportion of referrals that result in a surgical booking has the potential to decrease the wait for initial consult, an important piece of the wait time continuum for knee OA.