Results of isolated acetabular revisions: the fate of the unrevised femoral component.
Controversy exists over whether to remove a well-fixed femoral component at the time of revision of a failed acetabular component, and it has been suggested that the femoral component be removed and recemented. The hypothesis presented in this article is that only the acetabular component should be revised in these situations. Thirty-eight isolated, uncemented acetabular revisions were performed by 1 surgeon and prospectively followed for a mean of 4 years (range, 2-10 years). The femoral component was well fixed at the time of revision and left in situ. There were 30 cemented and 8 uncemented femoral components, which had been in place for a mean of 10.7 years. The hips were evaluated clinically using the Harris hip score rating system. Radiographic evaluation of both components was performed using well-established criteria. Morselized cancellous allograft was used to fill acetabular defects in 30 hips, and a bulk allograft was used in 1 hip. There was a good or excellent clinical result in 32 hips (84%). Two cemented femoral components required revision for aseptic loosening at 2.5 and 4 years. No acetabular component migrated or was revised, and no revisions of either component are pending. Thirty-six (95%) of the unrevised femoral components remain well fixed at the most recent follow-up examination. Compared with a similar population of hips in which both the acetabular and femoral components were revised, the mean blood loss for these revisions was 52% less and the mean surgical time was 35% shorter. Revision of only the acetabular component is recommended for isolated acetabular aseptic loosening. Because the femoral component is not removed, surgical time and blood loss are decreased and serious potential complications related to removing a well-fixed femoral component can be avoided.
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