National Institute of Clinical Excellence guidelines state that cemented stems with an Orthopaedic Data Evaluation Panel (ODEP) rating of > 3B should be used for hemiarthroplasty when treating an intracapsular fracture of the femoral neck. These recommendations are based on studies in which most, if not all stems, did not hold such a rating.
This case-control study compared the outcome of hemiarthroplasty using a cemented (Exeter) or uncemented (Corail) femoral stem. These are the two prostheses most commonly used in hip arthroplasty in the UK.
Data were obtained from two centres; most patients had undergone hemiarthroplasty using a cemented Exeter stem (n = 292/412). Patients were matched for all factors that have been shown to influence mortality after an intracapsular fracture of the neck of the femur. Outcome measures included: complications, re-operations and mortality rates at two, seven, 30 and 365 days post-operatively. Comparable outcomes for the two stems were seen.
There were more intra-operative complications in the uncemented group (13%vs0%), but the cemented group had a greater mortality in the early post-operative period (n = 6). There was no overall difference in the rate of re-operation (5%) or death (365 days: 26%) between the two groups at any time post-operatively.
This study therefore supports the use of both cemented and uncemented stems of proven design, with an ODEP rating of 10A, in patients with an intracapsular fracture of the neck of the femur.