Background The risk of prosthetic joint infection increases with Staphylococcus aureus colonization. The cost-effectiveness of decolonization is controversial. We evaluated cost-effectiveness decolonization protocols in high-risk arthroplasty patients. Methods An analytical model evaluated risk under 3 protocols: 4 swabs, 2 swabs, and nasal swab alone. These were compared to no-screening and universal decolonization strategies. Cost-effectiveness was evaluated from the hospital, patient, and societal perspective. Results Under base case conditions, universal decolonization and 4-swab strategies were most effective. The 2-swab and universal decolonization strategy were most cost-effective from patient and societal perspectives. From the hospital perspective, universal decolonization was the dominant strategy (much less costly and more effective). Conclusion S aureus decolonization may be cost-effective for reducing prosthetic joint infections in high-risk patients. These results may have important implications for treatment of patients and for cost containment in a bundled payment system.
- Staphylococcus aureus
- prosthetic joint infection
- surgical site infection
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Orthopedics and Sports Medicine