Correlation between thigh pain and radiological findings with a proximally porous-coated stem

Published online: Oct 27 2007

Plamen Kinov, Roman Radl, Maximilian Zacherl, Andreas Leithner, Reinhard Windhager

From the Medical University of Graz, Graz, Austria


Thigh pain has been consistently reported with cementless hip arthroplasty. The correlation between thigh pain and radiological findings and the clinical significance of thigh pain have not been studied in any detail. We carried out a retrospective study to analyse the performance of a proximally porous-coated cementless femoral component. Ninety-eight total hip arthroplasties were followed up clinically and radiologically for an average of 33 months (range : 12 to 64) after operation. The clinical results were good or excellent in 85 cases (87%). Thirteen patients (13%) reported thigh pain at latest follow-up. Subsidence of the stem was recorded in 10 cases, cortical thickening occurred in 14 hips (14%), and 17 hips (17%) presented proximal osteopenia. Proximally, radiolucent lines were observed in 11 cases. Thigh pain correlated with radiolucent lines, femoral thickening, fibrous fixation and stem migration. Bone remodelling was noted to continue even five years after implantation. Our observations demonstrated bone ingrowth in the majority of the cases and a low incidence of thigh pain. The correlation between radiological changes and thigh pain suggests implant micromotion and migration in some hips. Patients with thigh pain, changes in the proximal femur and progressive subsidence need further clinical and radiological follow-up.