BACKGROUND: Existing review required updating. OBJECTIVE: To evaluate the effectiveness of physiotherapy exercise after discharge from hospital on function, walking, range of motion, quality of life and muscle strength, for patients following elective primary total hip arthroplasty for osteoarthritis. DESIGN: Systematic review from January 2007 to November 2013. DATA SOURCES: AMED, CINAHL, EMBASE, MEDLINE, Kingsfund Database, and PEDro. Cochrane CENTRAL, BioMed Central (BMC), The Department of Health National Research Register and Clinical register. Searches were overseen by a librarian. Authors were contacted for missing information. No language restrictions were applied. ELIGIBILITY CRITERIA: Trials comparing physiotherapy exercise vs usual/standard care, or comparing two types of relevant exercise physiotherapy, following discharge from hospital after elective primary total hip replacement for osteoarthritis were reviewed. OUTCOMES: Functional activities of daily living, walking, quality of life, muscle strength and joint range of motion. STUDY APPRAISAL: Quality and risk of bias for studies were evaluated. Data were extracted and meta-analyses considered. RESULTS: 11 trials are included in the review. Trial quality was mixed. Newly included studies were assessed as having lower risk of bias than previous studies. Narrative review indicates that physiotherapy exercise after discharge following total hip replacement may potentially benefit patients in terms of function, walking and muscle strengthening. LIMITATIONS: The overall quality and quantity of trials, and their diversity, prevented meta-analyses. CONCLUSIONS: Disappointingly, insufficient evidence still prevents the effectiveness of physiotherapy exercise following discharge to be determined for this patient group. High quality, adequately powered, trials with long term follow up are required.

Original publication




Journal article



Publication Date





252 - 265


Exercise, Hip arthroplasty, Physiotherapy, Systematic review, Activities of Daily Living, Arthroplasty, Replacement, Hip, Exercise Therapy, Humans, Muscle Strength, Osteoarthritis, Hip, Prospective Studies, Quality of Life, Randomized Controlled Trials as Topic, Range of Motion, Articular, Walking