Send to

Choose Destination
See comment in PubMed Commons below
BMC Musculoskelet Disord. 2013 Jan 17;14:31. doi: 10.1186/1471-2474-14-31.

Hemiarthroplasties in young patients with osteonecrosis or a tumour of the proximal femur; an observational cohort study.

Author information

Department of Orthopaedic Surgery, Leiden University Medical Centre, Albinusdreef 2, P.O. Box 9600, 2333 ZA, Leiden, The Netherlands.



The failure scenario in total hip arthroplasty (THA), in younger patients, is dependent on the fixation and wear of the acetabular component. In selected cases, where endoprosthetic replacement of the femoral head is unavoidable for limb salvage or functional recovery, hemiarthroplasty can be chosen as an alternative. The purpose of this study is to evaluate hemiarthroplasty as treatment strategy for young patients with osteonecrosis or a tumour of the proximal femur.


Between 1985 and 2008, 42 hemiarthroplasties (unipolar and bipolar) were performed in patients younger than 65 years with osteonecrosis (n=13) or a tumour of the proximal femur (n=29). All patients were seen at yearly follow-up examination and evaluated. Revision or conversion to a THA was regarded as a failure of the implant. A Kaplan Meier analysis was performed. To determine significant differences between categorical groups, the Pearson chi-square test was used. In numerical groups the independent T-test and One-way ANOVA were used.


After a mean follow-up of 7.1 years, failure of the hemiarthroplasty occurred 6 times. The Kaplan Meier survival analysis with conversion to THA or revision as endpoint of the bipolar hemiarthroplasties (n=38) shows a 96% survival at 15, and 60% at 20 years. In the unipolar type (n=4) we found a conversion rate of 50% within 3 years.


Bipolar hemiarthroplasty is a reasonable alternative in a young patient with osteonecrosis or a tumour of the proximal femur as indication. Because of the high conversion rate after unipolar hemiarthroplasties, we would not recommend this type of prosthesis in the young patient.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article
PubMed Commons home

PubMed Commons

How to join PubMed Commons

    Supplemental Content

    Full text links

    Icon for BioMed Central Icon for PubMed Central
    Loading ...
    Support Center