Hematologic Expression After Shoulder Surgery: Normalization Curve of Serum Inflammatory Markers

Published:September 21, 2020DOI:


      To determine the normalization curves of the serologic markers including white blood cell (WBC) count, WBC differential for segmented neutrophil (WBC seg.), erythrocyte sedimentation rate (ESR), and C-reactive protein (CRP) after elective shoulder surgery and to investigate the hematologic differences among different shoulder surgeries. Methods: Seventy-seven patients underwent arthroscopic rotator cuff repair (RCR, group A), 44 patients had open rotator cuff repair (group B), and 84 patients had shoulder arthroplasty (group C). Peak and normalization times of markers were determined at preoperatively, postoperative day (POD) 1 and 2 days, 1 and 2 weeks, 1, 2, 3, 6 months, and 1 year after surgery. The normal ranges of serologic markers were set to WBC 4000 to10,000/μL, WBC seg. 40% to 60%, ESR 0 to 20 mm/h, and CRP 0 to 0.8 mg/dL. Results: Groups reached peak mean WBC count and WBC seg. on POD 1; mean WBC count started decreasing on POD 2 but was within normal value afterwards. Mean WBC seg. decreased to normal value at 1 month postoperatively in group A and B and at 2 months postoperatively in group C. Mean ESR peaked at 2 weeks postoperatively and normalized after 1 month in groups A and B and 3 months in group C. Mean CRP levels peaked on POD 2 in all groups and normalized within 2 weeks postoperatively in groups A and B and 1 month postoperatively in Group C. Normalized values of WBC count, WBC seg., and ESR varied widely. In contrast, CRP showed a consistent undetectable median, upper and lower quartile values less than 0.5 after normalization. Mean serum ESR and CRP values at peak time were significantly greater in group C than in the other groups (P = .001). Conclusions: The mean CRP levels were normalized at 2 weeks after rotator cuff repair and at 1 month after arthroplasties. Unlike the other serologic markers, CRP had consistent normalized values of median, upper and lower quartile afterwards. The peak levels of the inflammatory markers were greater and therefore normalized slower following more invasive surgery.

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