Year : 2017  |  Volume : 2  |  Issue : 1  |  Page : 1-10

Effect of tourniquet use during total knee arthroplasty on global inflammatory cytokine changes associated with ischemia- reperfusion injury

1 Keck School of Medicine of the University of Southern California, Los Angeles, CA, USA
2 Keck School of Medicine of the University of Southern California, Los Angeles, CA; Department of Molecular Microbiology & Immunology, University of Southern California, Los Angeles, CA, USA

Correspondence Address:
E Todd Schroeder
Keck School of Medicine of the University of Southern California, Los Angeles, CA
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/2542-4157.201056

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The use of tourniquets during total knee arthroplasties has been debated given the possibility that prolonged application of a tourniquet may result in ischemia-reperfusion injury, potentially contributing to post-operative muscle atrophy. The goal of this study is to elucidate the influence that tourniquet use may have on the induction of ischemia-reperfusion injury in muscle tissue following total knee arthroplasties surgeries. We hypothesize that prolonged operative use of a tourniquet will cause global increases in pro-inflammatory cytokines indicating the occurrence of ischemia-reperfusion injury, which may contribute to post-operative muscle atrophy. Fifty patients undergoing total knee arthroplasties surgeries were separated into three groups: no tourniquet (n = 17), operative tourniquet (n = 15), and tourniquet during implant cementation (n = 18). Induction of ischemia-reperfusion injury was evaluated by measuring changes in inflammatory cytokines in blood samples collected from an antecubital vein before and after surgery. Analysis suggests statistically significant differences in the concentrations of specific cytokines depending on variable tourniquet application. Overall, both pro-inflammatory and anti-inflammatory cytokines (including tumor necrosis factor-α, interleukin 1β, 4, 5, 12, and monocyte chemtactic protein-1) were found to increase upon application of tourniquets during cementation and decrease without tourniquet use or upon application of operative tourniquets. In general only slight changes in inflammatory cytokines occurred based on altered tourniquet use during total knee arthroplasties. Using global changes in inflammatory cytokine levels as an indicator of ischemia-reperfusion injury, these data may suggest that the use of a tourniquet does not significantly contribute to induction of ischemia-reperfusion injury in total knee arthroplasty surgeries. However, additional studies comparing local plasma cytokine changes near the tourniquet site and utilizing larger sample sizes are necessary to determine if tourniquets can be used in total knee arthroplasty without inducing ischemia-reperfusion injury.

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