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Clin Orthop Relat Res. 1996 Dec;(333):15-26.

The Otto Aufranc Award. Skeletal response to well fixed femoral components inserted with and without cement.

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  • 1Department of Orthopaedic Surgery, Washington University School of Medicine, St. Louis, MO 63110, USA.


Previous studies evaluating femoral remodeling after total hip arthroplasty have used clinical radiographs and dual energy xray absorptiometry. Limitation of these techniques make it impossible to quantify the magnitude of bone loss in terms of cortical thinning and cortical bone area and bone mineral density changes. Femoral cortical bone remodeling after cemented and cementless replacement was quantified and possible determinants of bone remodeling in terms of clinical and radiographic variables were evaluated. Forty-eight anatomic specimen femora from 24 patients with unilateral cemented and cementless hip replacements were analyzed. Cortical thickness, cortical bone area, and bone mineral density was assessed in 4 quadrants at 5 discrete levels. The maximum cortical bone loss by level was at the middle section for the cemented femurs and at the midproximal and middle sections for the cementless femurs. However, if one examines individual quadrants, the proximal medial cortex still represents the specific region of maximal bone loss for both types of implant fixation. The posterior cortex had substantially more bone loss, even in the diaphyseal levels, than had been previously appreciated. A strong correlation was noted between the bone mineral density of the control femur and the percentage decrease of bone mineral density in the remodeled femur. Based on this data, it seems that the less dense the bone is before hip replacement surgery, the greater the extent of bone loss after total hip arthroplasty regardless of the fixation type.

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