Arthroplasty and COVID-19

In these days of the coronavirus pandemic, many planned non-urgent surgical procedures, such as hip and knee joint implants, had to be postponed until further notice. RIAP has published some tips for home use to improve joint health before or after surgery.

Information for patients

Information for patients who are about to make a trip and who are afraid of finding it difficult at airport security checks due to the implanted prosthesis.
The Italian Registry of Arthroplasty (RIAP) - to which the Provincial Registry of Joint Prostheses (RPPA) also adheres - has produced the text of a facsimile of a medical certificate in two languages (Italian and English) that the patient's physician will be able to write on his or her letterhead, or on that of the facility in which he or she exercises, and that he or she will give and sign. This certificate may be presented to the staff present at the controls: in this way they will be informed that the patient has undergone a prosthesis operation and that the implanted device contains metal parts that may activate the airport security systems..

The Provincial Arthroplasty Register (RPPA)

The muscular and skeletal pathologies are the most known and common causes of chronically ill with high-potential of disability. 50% of persons over 65 years are affected (source: ISS/RIAP). The scientific literature reports detailed that with a prosthetic implant after pathologies regarding knee and hip joints the articular functionalities are restored about nearly completely. Furthermore the implant eliminates the painful clinical features and improves the general quality of life of patients.
In the Autonomous Province of Bolzano more than 2.400 arthroplasty interventions (knee and hip) are effectuated in 2019. Therefore we have the highest hospitalization rate nationwide with all his benefits for the patients.
The number of arthroplasty interventions is nationwide and world-wide constantly growing and this has a high impact on the health budget, which raises the interest to improve sanitary registers. They are necessary to monitor the utilization of prosthesis and to evaluate their survival time.
Starting from 2009 the Autonomous Province of Bolzano has participated at the activities of the scientific national committee and sated the fundamentals of the own provincial register.
The provincial Arthroplasty Register was officially instituted with provincial law n. 3 of the 13th of May 2011. The provincial Register enables observation of the utilization and survival time of prostheses and allows tracing of the patient in case of failure or unfavourable outcome.
The Hip Replacement Register is an instrument for registration of all interventions in our Province and allows making:

  • epidemiologic studies concerning interventions and registered pathologies
  • analysis about the survival time of the different types of hip prosthesis
  • comparison between different hip implants to verify the failure rate
  • comparison between the results of the different departments using the same hip implants
  • surveillance of the evolution of implants and interventions.

The analysis of the survival time of the implant would allow identifying the implants, which present a lower efficacy of the expected or fail prematurely. The availability to a provincial or national register also allows tracing the patients in case of unfavourable events.
The provincial Arthroplasty Register is coordinated and located at the Epidemiologic Observatory. The Local Health Authority has nominated the Scientific Provincial Committee. Its task is the technical and scientific supervision of the Register. Members of this Committee are representatives of the health districts and the private clinic S. Maria.


National Register

Italian Register

European Registries

Worldwide Register:

Other Links: