Proximal and Distal Femoral Centralizers in Modern Cemented Hip Arthroplasty

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Third generation cementing techniques using intramedullary restrictors, low porosity cement with pressurization, lavage, and cement-stem bond enhancement do not prevent implant malalignment and inadequate cement mantle thickness. This has led to the development of modular proximal and distal centralizers to control the alignment of the femoral component and maintain an adequate thickness of the cement, thereby theoretically decreasing the rate of aseptic loosening. A retrospective analysis was performed of 100 primary cemented centralized femoral components. At an average followup of 5.7 years (range, 4-8 years), the average Harris Hip Score was 90. There were no cases of aseptic loosening, osteolysis, or impending failure. Ninety-one percent of femoral stems were implanted with satisfactory alignment with an optimal cement thickness. However, six distal centralizers and one proximal centralizer fractured at the time of insertion and voids frequently were seen in and around the distal centralizer. Although centralizers improve prosthesis alignment and cement mantle thickness, the long term effects of centralizer fracture and distal cement voids need to be observed to determine if centralizers improve previous implant survival.

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