No effect of PMMA bone cement on thrombocyte levels after total hip arthroplasty

Published online: Dec 27 2010

Thomas J. Heyse, Turgay Efe, Jelena Baetz, Carsten O. Tibesku, Susanne Fuchs-Winkelmann, J├╝rgen Paletta, Jan Schmitt

From the, University Hospital, Marburg, Germany


Thrombocytopenia has been reported to occur after total hip arthroplasty (THA). Several in vitro studies have investigated whether polymethylmethacrylate (PMMA) bone cement could be a possible origin for toxic agents that interfere with platelet function and survival. The aim of this study was to screen patient data for postoperative thrombocytopenia and the level of platelet concentrations in relation with the fixation method of THA. A consecutive series of 499 THAs was studied (24.6% fully cemented, 45.5% hybrid and 29.9% uncemented). Pre- and postoperative thrombocyte levels were recorded. Patient data were reviewed for age, indication, BMI, blood cell count, and thromboembolic events. Patients in the noncemented group were significantly younger and their thrombocyte levels were higher. There were no statistically significant differences in platelet loss between groups at any point in time following THA. Platelet concentrations had fully recovered at the time of discharge from hospital. Power analysis revealed that the cohort was large enough to show even small effect sizes. The use of PMMA cement in THA does not appear to affect postoperative platelet concentrations to any significant extent.