High cup angle and microseparation increase the wear of hip surface replacements

Clin Orthop Relat Res. 2009 Sep;467(9):2259-65. doi: 10.1007/s11999-009-0830-x. Epub 2009 Apr 11.


High wear rates and high patient ion levels have been associated with high (> 55 degrees) cup inclination angles for metal-on-metal surface replacements. Wear rates and patterns have been simulated for ceramic-on-ceramic bearings by applying microseparation to replicate head offset deficiency. We tested 39-mm metal-on-metal surface replacements (n = 5) in a hip simulator with (A) an increased cup inclination angle of 60 degrees and (B) an increased cup inclination angle and microseparation over 2 million cycles. (A) resulted in a ninefold increase in wear rate and (B) resulted in a 17-fold increase in wear rate compared to a standard gait condition study. Wear particles produced under microseparation conditions were larger than those produced under standard conditions but of similar shape (round to oval). The data suggest both head and cup position influence the wear of surface replacements; we believe it likely bearings with high wear either have a high cup inclination angle, an offset deficient head, or a combination of both.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Arthroplasty, Replacement, Hip / instrumentation*
  • Arthroplasty, Replacement, Hip / methods
  • Hip Prosthesis*
  • Humans
  • Materials Testing
  • Particle Size
  • Prosthesis Design*
  • Prosthesis Failure*
  • Weight-Bearing