Patient-specific chondrolabral contact mechanics in patients with acetabular dysplasia following treatment with peri-acetabular osteotomy.

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Using a validated, patient-specific finite element (FE) modeling protocol, we evaluated cartilage and labrum (i.e., chondrolabral) mechanics before and after peri-acetabular osteotomy (PAO) to provide insight into the ability of this procedure to improve mechanics in dysplastic hips.


Five patients with acetabular dysplasia were recruited in this case-controlled, prospective study. Models, which included anatomy for bone, cartilage, and labrum, were generated from computed tomography (CT) arthrography scans acquired before and after PAO. Cartilage and labrum contact stress and contact area were quantified overall and regionally. Load supported by the labrum, expressed as a percentage of the total hip force, was analyzed.


Percent cartilage contact area increased post-operatively overall, medially, and superiorly. Peak acetabular contact stress decreased overall, laterally, anteriorly, and superiorly. Average contact stress decreased overall, laterally, anteriorly, and posteriorly. Only average contact stress on the superior labrum and peak labrum stress overall decreased. Load supported by the labrum did not change significantly.


PAO was efficacious at medializing cartilage contact and reducing cartilage contact stresses, and therefore may minimize deleterious loading to focal cartilage lesions, subchondral cysts, and cartilage delaminations often observed in the lateral acetabulum of dysplastic hips. However, the excessively prominent, hypertrophied labrum of dysplastic hips remains in contact with the femoral head, which continues to load the labrum following PAO. The clinical ramifications of continued labral loading following PAO are not known. However, it is plausible that failure to reduce the load experienced by the labrum could result in end-stage hip OA following PAO.

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