Background: A surgical guide made by the rapid prototyping (RP) technique for cup insertion in total hip arthroplasty might be useful to avoid malalignment of the cup, which indicates postoperative complications.
Methods: To address this research question, we applied a RP-based guide to 24 patients with their CT images. We designed it to fit onto the acetabular edge and to insert a Kirschner wire (K-wire) which indicated a planned cup direction. We intraoperatively placed it on the acetabular edge, inserted the K-wire through the guide on the superior acetabulum and implanted the cup while observing the alignment of the K-wire. We also recorded the additional time needed to use the guide.
Results: The mean cup accuracy between planned and postoperative alignments was 2.8 degrees (SD = 2.1 degrees ) for abduction and 3.7 degrees (SD = 2.7 degrees ) for anteversion. The mean additional time was 3.5 (range 2-6) min.
Conclusion: We can use this guide with acceptable accuracy and without consuming an excessive amount of time.