Complications Associated with the Periacetabular Osteotomy: A Prospective Multicenter Study

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The purpose of this prospective multicenter study was to determine and categorize all complications associated with the periacetabular osteotomy performed by experienced surgeons.


We prospectively analyzed perioperative complications in 205 consecutive unilateral periacetabular osteotomies performed at seven institutions by ten surgeons. All perioperative complications were recorded at an average of ten weeks and one year after surgery in standardized fashion using a validated complication grading scheme applied to hip preservation procedures. The mean patient age was 25.4 years. There were 143 female and sixty-two male patients. The most common diagnosis was developmental acetabular dysplasia, and concomitant procedures most commonly included femoral osteochondroplasty (58%) or hip arthroscopy (20%), which could include labral repair or resection.


Major complications (grade III or IV) occurred in twelve patients (5.9%). Seven complications were evident at the ten-week visit and five at the one-year visit. Nine of the complications required a second surgical intervention, including repair for acetabular migration or implant adjustment (four patients), incision and drainage for a deep infection (two patients), and heterotopic bone resection, contralateral peroneal nerve decompression, and posterior column fixation (one patient each). Three thromboembolic complications were managed medically. There were no vascular injuries, permanent nerve palsies, intra-articular osteotomies and/or fractures, or acetabular osteonecrosis. The most common grade-I or II complication was asymptomatic heterotopic ossification.


For surgeons experienced with the periacetabular osteotomy, it is a safe procedure but is associated with a 5.9% risk of grade-III or IV complications beyond the learning curve. The majority of these complications are resolved without permanent disability.

Level of Evidence:

Therapeutic Level IV. See Instructions for Authors for a complete description of levels of evidence.

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