Failure of total hip arthroplasty with Boneloc bone cement.

Published online: Dec 27 2000

P Gebuhr, K Stentzer, F Thomsen, and N Levi.

Department of Orthopaedic Surgery, Amager Hospital, University Hospital of Copenhagen, Italiensvej 1, Copenhagen 2300 S, Denmark.


Early failure of Boneloc cemented total hip arthroplasty is well documented. However, information regarding the long term prognosis is scanty. The aim of this study was therefore to assess the long term failure rate of total hip replacement with Boneloc bone cement. Between January 1991 and March 1992, Boneloc bone cement (Polymers Recontructive A/S, Farum, Denmark) was used in 42 consecutive total hip replacements in 42 patients. The average age of the patients was 75 years. There were 25 women and 17 men. The diagnosis at operation was osteoarthritis in all cases. A cemented Muller Taperloc femoral stem was used with a cemented Muller acetabular cup (Biomet, Warsaw, USA). The follow-up time was 9 years. All patients underwent radiographic control the first postoperative year and annually after 1995. To date 21 patients have been revised for aseptic loosening at a mean of 5 years (range: one year to 8 years). Three other patients have definite radiographic evidence of loosening. The overall failure rate is therefore 24/42 = 57%. Our results confirm the previously reported poor results of Boneloc bone cement for hip arthroplasty and support the recommendation of indefinite follow-up for surviving prostheses. New prosthesis designs and new cements should have documentation, including laboratory tests and randomized clinical studies with radiostereometric evaluation. However, the ethical responsibility rests heavily on the shoulders of the clinician to make a correct analysis of the need for a new product before he begins to use it.