What Factors Influence Compliance With Sequential Compression Devices in an Orthopaedic Unit: A Quality Assurance Observational Study


The purpose of this study was to determine the compliance rate with sequential suppression devices (SCDs) of patients admitted to an orthopaedic unit of a level I trauma center. A quality assurance observational study was conducted over a 4-week period (June/July 2015). Three observations were performed per 24-hour period (0700, 1300, 1900 hours). ‘‘Full SCD compliance’’ was defined as the SCD ordered, on and functioning properly at the time of observation. Of the 1356 observations in 109 patients, 434 (32%) were fully compliant with SCD prophylaxis. SCD compliance in trauma patients was higher (21%) as compared with elective surgical patients (10%) (p < .0001). Morning observations had the highest compliance rate (38.3%), whereas the afternoon (23.5%) and evening observations (33.1%) had less compliance rates (p < .0001). There was a significantly higher compliance rate on weekdays (33.9%) as compared with weekends (28%) (p < .03). The overall low compliance level (32%) indicates compliance challenges and not the modality of the prophylaxis as the cause (Journal of Surgical Orthopaedic Advances 27(4):307–311, 2018) Key words: compression device, compliance, DVT, DVT prophylaxis, orthopaedic surgery, PE, SCD, sequential compression device

Avionna L. Baldwin, BS; Sean J. McMahon, MBA; and Addisu Mesfin, MD