Review of the outcomes of complex acetabular reconstructions using a stemmed acetabular pedestal component

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Until now, there has been no consensus as to whether stemmed acetabular components are appropriate for use in patients undergoing revision total hip arthroplasty (THA) who have major acetabular defects or pelvic discontinuity. We wished to address this deficiency in the literature.

Patients and Methods

We carried out a retrospective study of 35 patients (six men and 29 women) with a mean age of 68 years (37 to 87), with major acetabular defects who underwent revision THA between 2000 and 2012.


At a mean follow-up of 63 months (24 to 141), a total of 15 patients (43%) had required at least one further operation. Six implants (17%) loosened aseptically, four (11%) were further revised for infection and two (6%) for technical failure. By taking revision for any reason as the endpoint, the rate of survival of the implant was 61% after five years; by taking revision for aseptic loosening as the end point, it was 78%. The cumulative five-year survival for aseptic loosening was 94% in patients without pelvic discontinuity, and 56% in those with pelvic discontinuity.


These results indicate a significantly worse survival in patients with pelvic discontinuity (p = 0.020) and we advise caution in the use of the pedestal component in patients with major acetabular defects and pelvic discontinuity who require revision THA. As a result of these findings we have stopped using this implant and prefer to use particulate bone grafts protected with an anti-protrusion cage and posterior column plate fixation, if necessary.


Take home message: Based on these poor results, we advise caution if using the pedestal component in patients with major acetabular defects with the presence of a pelvic discontinuity.


Cite this article:Bone Joint J2016;98-B:772-9.

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