Objectives: (1) To evaluate the effect of pelvic orientation on measurements of hip joint space widths (JSW) in cadaver pelvic radiographs, thereby validating the pelvic radiographs of the Copenhagen City Heart Study: The Osteoarthritis Substudy (CCHS III) cohort of 4.152 subjects, and (2) to investigate the relationship between minimal JSW and self reported hip pain of the cohort.
Methods: (1) Cadaver pelves and proximal femora of one male and one female donor were mounted in holding devices permitting independent rotation (total arc of 42 degrees), and inclination/reclination (total arc of 24 degrees). At each 3 degrees increment an anteroposterior radiograph was recorded. Measurements of JSW were performed. (2) Self reported recurrent pain in or around the hip joint during 12 months prior to baseline examinations, and minimum JSW in pelvic radiographs of the cohort were registered. Relationships between minimum JSW and self reported pain were investigated.
Results: (1) Measurements of hip JSW in cadaver radiographs were not influenced significantly by rotation. Measurements of JSW were inconclusively influenced by varying inclination/reclination. (2) Minimum JSW< or =2.0 mm was significantly associated to self reported pain in or around the hip joint in both sexes.
Conclusion: Measurements of minimum hip JSW did not seem to be significantly influenced by varying spatial orientation of the pelvis during X-ray recordings. An inclusion criteria of minimum JSW< or =2.0 mm designating definite degenerative pathology in hips will be used by the current authors in future studies.