Aim To determine the impact of arthroplasty on player handicap, frequency of golf played, return to club competitions and overall mental and physical health using the SF-12.
Method A three page, 30 item, open access survey was sent to a community of over 500,000 golfers via the newsletter for the HowDidIDo® app between 18/04/2019–30/04/2019, inviting users who had undergone a joint replacement to complete. Responses were analysed using Microsoft excel and StatsDirect.
Results A total of 3043 valid responses were received, the majority were male (n=2392). Mean age was 70 years (25–92). Most respondents had only a single joint replacement (n=1977). Within the cohort, there were mostly hips (n=2092) and knees (n=2069) replaced with far fewer shoulders (n=101), although this concurred with NJR population data. Across the whole cohort, most respondents were playing more (40%) or the same (44%) amount of golf following arthroplasty. Across the cohort only 4% were assumed unable to return to club competitions, while 76% of respondents returned to competitions within six months. Mean handicap prior to arthroplasty was increased (17.6 to 18.9) with no significant difference between hips, knees and shoulders. The SF-12 results were completed for 1094 respondents which when matched for age, demonstrated higher physical (48.59 vs. 43.65) and mental health (55.59 vs.52.10) scores.
Conclusions Joint replacement enables the vast majority of patients to continue or increase the amount of golf played with most returning to club competitions within six months. A slight increase in handicap is demonstrated following surgery in this cohort, with stabilisation after this initial increase. Patients playing golf following arthroplasty demonstrate better physical and mental health than their age matched counterparts.
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