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Long-term Radiographic Assessment of Cemented Polyethylene Acetabular Cups

By Sophie Williams, Graham Isaac, Neil Porter, John Fisher and John Older

Abstract

In vitro studies demonstrating excessive wear in polyethylene cups sterilized using gamma irradiation and stored in air led to the abandonment of this sterilization technique. We evaluated the clinical wear performance of a metal femoral component on a polyethylene cup in a hip prosthesis from a selected subset of implants in a group of patients followed for at least 20 years and assessed the time dependency of variation in penetration rates. We measured penetration in 33 polyethylene cups in 25 patients who had a Charnley low-friction arthroplasty between 1982 and 1984. All patients had Charnley Ogee® cups implanted for more than 20 years and sterilized using the gamma irradiation in air technique. If degradation occurred over time in vivo, it was not reflected by an increased penetration rate with increasing time in vivo; even after 20 years of implantation, the degree of wear remained low. This suggests gamma irradiation affects wear on ultra-high-molecular-weight polyethylene by reducing wear secondary to the crosslinking, by increasing wear as shown through in vitro studies of heavily oxidized samples, or by oxidation resulting from prolonged shelf life. The effect of progressive oxidation in vivo does not appear to affect wear in vivo

Topics: Symposium: Papers Presented at the Closed Meeting of the International Hip Society
Publisher: Springer-Verlag
OAI identifier: oai:pubmedcentral.nih.gov:2505130
Provided by: PubMed Central
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