Partial two-stage exchange of the infected total hip replacement using disposable spacer moulds

A V Lombardi, K R Berend, J B Adams
Bone & Joint Journal 2014, 96-B (11 Supple A): 66-9
The common recommended treatment for infected total hip replacement is two-staged exchange including removal of all components. However, removal of well-fixed femoral stems can result in structural bone damage. We recently reported on an alternative treatment of partial two-stage exchange used in selected cases, in which a well-fixed femoral stem was left and only the acetabular component removed, the joint space was debrided thoroughly, an antibiotic-laden polymethylmethacrylate spacer was moulded using a bulb-type syringe and placed in the acetabulum, intravenous antibiotics were administered during the interval, and delayed re-implantation was performed. In 19 patients treated with this technique from January 2000 to January 2011, 89% were free of infection at a mean follow-up of four years (2 to 11). Since then, disposable silicone moulds have become available to fabricate spacers in separate femoral and head units. The head spacer mould, which incorporates various neck taper adapter options, greatly facilitates the technique of partial two-stage exchange. We report our early experience using disposable silicone head spacer moulds for partial two-stage exchange in seven patients with infected primary hip replacements.

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