Simplified biplanar classification for heterotopic ossification is more predictive of patient-reported outcomes than the Brooker classification after anterior total hip arthroplasty

Hip Int. 2023 May;33(3):420-425. doi: 10.1177/11207000211039173. Epub 2021 Sep 12.


Background: Heterotopic ossification (HO) commonly occurs after total hip arthroplasty (THA) and can adversely impact clinical outcomes. The purpose of this study is to propose a more reliable HO grading method that is better predictive of patient-reported outcomes (PROs) after THA than the Brooker classification.

Methods: 513 THAs (62 ± 10 years old) were reviewed. The incidence and grade of HO was evaluated using the Brooker grading system and a simplified biplanar classification system (grade 1: ⩾1 cm between bone on both anteroposterior and lateral views, grade 2: <1 cm between bone on either view). The modified Harris Hip Score (mHHS), Forgotten Joint Score (FJS), and visual analogue scale (VAS) for pain were collected at minimum of 2 years after surgery and were compared between HO grades using multiple regression models.

Results: The incidence of HO varied by Brooker grade (grade 1, 23.4%; grade 2, 22.4%; grade 3, 7.2%; grade 4, 0%) and biplanar grade (grade 1: 45.6%; grade 2: 7.4%). The biplanar classification demonstrated higher interobserver reliability than the Brooker classification (κ = 0.95 and 0.91, respectively). Brooker grade 3 HO decreased the mHHS by 6.5 (standard error: 2.7) but did not have a significant effect on FJS or VAS. Biplanar grade 2 HO decreased the mHHS by 9.9 (standard error: 2.7), the FJS by 12.9 (standard error: 4.51) and increased the VAS pain score by 0.81 (standard error: 0.35). The Cox test was used to compare the fit of regression models and determined the biplanar classification was a significantly better predictor than the Brooker classification (p < 0.001).

Conclusions: Biplanar grade 2 HO had a significant negative influence on PROs. Contrary to previous literature, these results show clinical significance of non-bridging HO. Compared with the Brooker classification, the biplanar classification has greater interobserver reliability and is more predictive of outcomes after THA.

Keywords: Classification system; heterotopic ossification; total hip arthroplasty.

MeSH terms

  • Aged
  • Arthroplasty, Replacement, Hip* / adverse effects
  • Humans
  • Middle Aged
  • Ossification, Heterotopic* / epidemiology
  • Ossification, Heterotopic* / etiology
  • Pain / complications
  • Patient Reported Outcome Measures
  • Reproducibility of Results