Introduction: 3rd generation ceramic bearings were introduced in total hip arthroplasty (THA) with the potential to have better mechanical strength and wear properties than their predecessors. At present, there are few studies looking at the long-term results of this latest generation of ceramic bearings. The purpose of our study was to investigate the long-term clinical and radiographic results of 3rd generation ceramic-on-ceramic THA and the incidence of ceramic specific complications such as squeaking and bearing surface fracture.
Methods: The database of the senior author (J.D.W.) was reviewed. A total of 126 hip replacements performed in 108 patients (average age 39.6 years) with an average follow-up of 12.1 years (10-16 years) was identified. Clinical notes and plain radiographs were reviewed. To measure function, patients were contacted and an Oxford Hip Questionnaire was completed. Patients were also directly questioned about the presence of squeaking or any other sounds from the hip. Radiographs were evaluated for signs of wear, osteolysis, loosening and heterotopic ossification. The abduction angle of the acetabular component was measured.
Results: The average Oxford Hip Score was 39.8 out of 48. Survivorship at 10 years was 94.6% (95% CI) with revision for any cause as the endpoint. There was 1 femoral head fracture, no osteolysis, no squeaking and no detectable wear.
Conclusions: The good clinical and radiographic results for this series of patients are similar to other recent long-term studies looking at 3rd generation ceramic-on-ceramic THA. The results compare favourably with other bearing surfaces. The lack of osteolysis associated with this articulation is encouraging and may also make it a good choice for younger patients requiring total hip replacement.
Keywords: Arthroplasty; Ceramics; Hip; Replacement.