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J Orthop Res. 2018 Apr;36(4):1173-1177. doi: 10.1002/jor.23737. Epub 2017 Oct 9.

Ischemic femoral head osteonecrosis in a piglet model causes three dimensional decrease in acetabular coverage.

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Rady Children's Hospital, San Diego, California.
University of California, San Diego, California.
UT Southwestern Medical Center, Dallas, Texas.
Naval Medical Center, San Diego, California.
Texas Scottish Rite Hospital for Children, Dallas, Texas.


Legg-Calve-Perthes disease (LCPD) is a childhood form of ischemic osteonecrosis marked by development of severe femoral head deformity and premature osteoarthritis. The pathogenesis of femoral head deformity has been studied extensively using a piglet model of ischemic osteonecrosis, however, accompanying acetabular changes have not been investigated. The purpose of this study was to determine if acetabular changes accompany femoral head deformity in a well-established piglet model of LCPD and to define the acetabular changes using three dimensional computed tomography (3-D CT) and modeling. Twenty-four piglets were surgically induced with ischemic osteonecrosis on the right side. The contralateral hip was used as control. At 8 weeks postoperative, pelvi were retrieved and imaged with CT. Custom software was used to measure acetabular morphologic parameters on 3-D CT images. Moderate to severe femoral head deformities were present in all animals. Acetabula with accompanying femoral head deformity had a significant decrease in acetabular version and tilt (p < 0.001) and in coverage angle in the superior, posterior, and inferior quadrants (p < 0.05). These findings indicate that the development of femoral head deformity following ischemic osteonecrosis produces specific and predictable changes to the shape of the acetabulum. Acetabular changes described in patients with LCPD were observed in the piglet model. This model may serve as a valuable tool to elucidate the relationship between femoral head and acetabular deformities. © 2017 Orthopaedic Research Society. Published by Wiley Periodicals, Inc. J Orthop Res 36:1173-1177, 2018.


3-D acetabular coverage angle; Legg-Calve-Perthes disease; computed tomography; femoral head deformity; femoral head osteonecrosis; ischemic osteonecrosis of the femoral head; piglet model of Perthes disease

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