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The impact of canal flare index on leg length discrepancy after total hip arthroplasty

Peter Brumat, Borut Pompe, Vane Antolič, Blaž Mavčič
Archives of Orthopaedic and Trauma Surgery 2018, 138 (1): 123-129

INTRODUCTION: The femoral stem should protrude from femur by an appropriate vertical distance to allow leg length equalization at hip arthroplasty; this distance depends on the size/shape of medullary canal and implant. The relationship between femoral morphology and achievability of leg length restoration is currently unclear. Our aim was to examine the impact of the femoral canal flare index (CFI) on the risk of leg length discrepancy (LLD) after total hip arthroplasty with different femoral stems.

MATERIALS AND METHODS: The study cohort included 126 patients with unilateral primary total hip arthroplasty due to idiopathic osteoarthritis and three different types of implanted femoral stems. The impact of CFI on postoperative LLD was assessed with separate logistic regression model for each implant and covariables of age, gender, body mass index and femoral neck resection level.

RESULTS: Higher CFI was an independent risk factor for postoperative LLD ≥ 5 mm with odds ratio 4.5 (p = 0.03) in 49 stems with cementless metaphyseal fixation Implantcast-EcoFit®, regardless of the femoral neck resection level. CFI had no significant impact on LLD in 30 stems with cementless diaphyseal fixation EndoPlus-Zweymüller® or 47 cemented collared stems Link-SPII®. No significant difference was observed between groups in pre/postoperative WOMAC scores, postoperative radiographic LLD, subjectively reported LLD, insole use or complications after mean 6.8 years of follow-up.

CONCLUSIONS: Higher CFI increases the risk of clinically detectable postoperative LLD in single-wedge femoral stems with cementless metaphyseal fixation. CFI has no significant impact on LLD in femoral stems with cementless diaphyseal fixation or cemented fixation.


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