Modeling the trajectory of analgesic demand over time after total knee arthroplasty using the latent curve analysis

Po Han Lo, Mei Yung Tsou, Kuang Yi Chang

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

8 Citations (Scopus)


Objectives: Patient-controlled epidural analgesia (PCEA) is commonly used for pain relief after total knee arthroplasty (TKA). This study aimed to model the trajectory of analgesic demand over time after TKA and explore its influential factors using latent curve analysis. Methods: Data were retrospectively collected from 916 patients receiving unilateral or bilateral TKA and postoperative PCEA. PCEA demands during 12-hour intervals for 48 hours were directly retrieved from infusion pumps. Potentially influential factors of PCEA demand, including age, height, weight, body mass index, sex, and infusion pump settings, were also collected. A latent curve analysis with 2 latent variables, the intercept (baseline) and slope (trend), was applied to model the changes in PCEA demand over time. The effects of influential factors on these 2 latent variables were estimated to examine how these factors interacted with time to alter the trajectory of PCEA demand over time. Results: On average, the difference in analgesic demand between the first and second 12-hour intervals was only 15% of that between the first and third 12-hour intervals. No significant difference in PCEA demand was noted between the third and fourth 12-hour intervals. Aging tended to decrease the baseline PCEA demand but body mass index and infusion rate were positively correlated with the baseline. Only sex significantly affected the trend parameter and male individuals tended to have a smoother decreasing trend of analgesic demands over time. Patients receiving bilateral procedures did not consume more analgesics than their unilateral counterparts. Goodness of fit analysis indicated acceptable model fit to the observed data. Conclusions: Latent curve analysis provided valuable information about how analgesic demand after TKA changed over time and how patient characteristics affected its trajectory.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)776-781
Number of pages6
JournalClinical Journal of Pain
Issue number9
Publication statusPublished - Sep 1 2015


  • Latent curve model
  • Patient-controlled epidural analgesia
  • Total knee arthroplasty

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Clinical Neurology
  • Anesthesiology and Pain Medicine


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