Authors: Holubowycz, O., Howie, D., Group, T.L.A.S. and Middleton, R.

Journal: Journal of Bone & Joint Surgery, British Volume

Volume: 92-B

Pages: 518


Early revision is an important risk factor for repeated revision and poor results after primary total hip replacement and instability is a major cause of early revision. Larger articulations with cross-linked polyethylene are proposed as a solution, but these are not without risk, including fracture of the thin polyethylene rim of the liner. The aim of our study was to examine implant-related revisions among primary total hip replacement patients with up to six year follow-up in a randomized controlled trial which compared 28 mm and 36 mm metal on highly cross-linked polyethylene articulations in total hip replacement.557 patients undergoing primary total hip replacement were included in this study. Risk factors for dislocation and wear were controlled by stratification and patients were then randomized intra-operatively to either a 28 or 36 mm articulation.To date, 10 hips have been revised for implant-related problems following primary total hip replacement. Seven hips with a 28 mm articulation were revised to a larger articulation because of instability. Four of these were for recurrent dislocation, one for an irreduceable first dislocation and two for subluxation. In contrast, only one patient who had undergone total hip replacement with a 36 mm articulation was revised for recurrent dislocation. One hip with a 36 mm articulation in a well-positioned cup was revised to a 32 mm articulation because of elevated lip liner fracture. Another 36 mm articulation hip was revised for acetabular component loosening.This study shows that a 36 mm metal on highly cross-linked polyethylene articulation reduces the need for early revision for instability after primary total hip replacement. However, these benefits need to be weighed against the potential risks associated with these articulations, including rare fracture of the relatively thin poly-ethylene liner.

Source: Manual

Preferred by: Tom Wainwright