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Charnley Hip Replacements Stand the Test of Time

Posted on: 11/30/1999
Surgeons at the University of Iowa Hospitals and Clinics have been tracking total hip replacement (THR) patients for the last 25 years. In this study, the results of a single surgeon's cases using the Charnley hip implant are reported. Results after 10 and 15 years were reported in earlier studies.

Age of the patient, type of operation, and condition of the joint and implant after surgery were all recorded and compared over the years. The number of patients who had to have a second (revision) operation was also reported. Most revision surgeries were done because of implant infection, loosening, or dislocation.

Only about 15 per cent of the original patients in this study were still alive at the time of the 25-year follow-up. The average age of those still living was 82 years old. For the patients who had died, 88 per cent still had the original hip replacement. It was working well at the time of their deaths.

For the living patients, X-rays were taken to measure the rate of bone wear in the hip. Overall results for two types of methods to cement the hip in place were also compared. The authors report the Charnley THR with hand packed cement works well for most patients in the long-term. There were no differences in results using different cement techniques.

Patients who received the first cementless implants will be the focus of another study. Different types of implants and surgical techniques will continue to be compared over five, 10, 15, and 25 year periods of follow-up.

Andrea E. Buckwalter, BS, et al. Results of Charnley Total Hip Arthroplasty with Use of Improved Femoral Cementing Techniques. In The Journal of Bone and Joint Surgery. July 2006. Vol. 88-A. No. 7. Pp. 1481-1485.

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