Cortical strut allografts in the reconstruction of the femur in revision total hip arthroplasty: A basic science and clinical study

R. H. Emerson, T. I. Malinin, A. D. Cuellar, W. C. Head, P. C. Peters

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

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Repeated total hip arthroplasties cause a loss of bone stock that will produce diminished component support, and can compromise implant function. There is, therefore, a compelling argument to return bone stock to the femur at the time of revision arthroplasty. Cortical strut allografts serve this purpose. They unite consistently and reliably, by 8.4 months on average. The overall rate of strut union is 96.6%. The sequence of healing events starts with round-off, followed by partial bridging and complete bridging. The repair process includes remodeling of the host femur, as well as the graft. Although there is variable resorption of some grafts, usually where not opposed to the host bone, there is also extension of others from host callus build-up such that, on average, there is no significant measurable loss of graft length or width. Most of the allograft struts, 78%, maintained a radiodense appearance. Clinical results of femoral revision with strut allografting have shown satisfactory end results compared with historic controls, with an average Harris score of 79.6 and a 2.7% subsidence rate. Of particular note is that the subsidence rate and clinical scores did not vary with the state of the preoperative femur, as has been shown repeatedly in the past. The canine model shows that the strut allografts are biologically active. Through mobilization of mesenchymal tissue, they are transformed into vascularized calluslike structures while maintaining good strength, and then further remodel to lamellar bone.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)35-44
Number of pages10
JournalClinical orthopaedics and related research
Issue number285
StatePublished - Jan 1 1992


ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery
  • Orthopedics and Sports Medicine

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