Management of massive acetabular bone defects in revision arthroplasty of the hip using a reconstruction cage and porous metal augment

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It may not be possible to undertake revision total hip arthroplasty (THA) in the presence of massive loss of acetabular bone stock using standard cementless hemispherical acetabular components and metal augments, as satisfactory stability cannot always be achieved. We aimed to study the outcome using a reconstruction cage and a porous metal augment in these patients.

Patients and Methods

A total of 22 acetabular revisions in 19 patients were performed using a combination of a reconstruction cage and porous metal augments. The augments were used in place of structural allografts. The mean age of the patients at the time of surgery was 70 years (27 to 85) and the mean follow-up was 39 months (27 to 58). The mean number of previous THAs was 1.9 (1 to 3). All patients had segmental defects involving more than 50% of the acetabulum and seven hips had an associated pelvic discontinuity.


Three failures were observed in two hips, both of which had undergone a previous resection of a tumour affecting the acetabulum. Other complications included a late arterial injury, a sciatic nerve palsy, a dislocation treated with a femoral revision, a deep infection treated with irrigation and debridement and a fracture of the greater trochanter treated conservatively. The mean Oxford Hip Score significantly increased from 13.9 (2 to 23) to 28.7 (13 to 38) (p < 0.00001). The mean vertical distance between the centre of rotation of the hip and its normal location decreased from 30 mm to 10 mm.


Acceptable early survivorship can be achieved using this novel technique, but it may be unsuitable for use in patients who have previously undergone the resection of a tumour involving the acetabulum.

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