Highly Crosslinked Polyethylene Can Reduce Wear Rate in THA for High-Demand Patients: A Matched-Paired Controlled Study.

  • Guy Sylvain
  • Flecher Xavier
  • Sharma Akash
  • Argenson Jean-Noël
  • Ollivier Matthieu

  • Humans
  • Follow-Up Studies
  • Polyethylene
  • Total hip arthroplasty
  • Arthroplasty
  • Replacement
  • Hip/adverse effects
  • Prosthesis Design
  • Prosthesis Failure
  • Quality of Life
  • Hip Prosthesis/adverse effects
  • Osteolysis
  • Highly crosslinked polyethylene
  • Impact sport
  • Linear wear
  • Total hip prosthesis


BACKGROUND: The average age of patients benefiting from total hip arthroplasty (THA) has been declining. In addition to pain relief, patients seek to return to physical activity. However, the latter may increase polyethylene wear and therefore the potential risk of early aseptic loosening. The introduction of highly crosslinked polyethylene (HXLPE) has reduced wear rates in the general patient population. The objective of this study was to evaluate the influence of impact sports in patients operated with THA using ceramic-on-conventional polyethylene (cPE) versus ceramic-on-HXLPE, in terms of wear and function, with a minimum of five year follow-up. METHODS: Sixty-eight patients practicing an impact sport (University of California Los Angeles score ≥8) who underwent a primary THA were included: 34 with a ceramic-on-cPE versus 34 with a ceramic-on-HXLPE using the same cementless acetabular and femoral component. Patients were matched-paired by age, sex, BMI, and University of California Los Angeles score. The wear analysis was performed using the IMAGIKA software. The Harris hip score and hip and osteoarthritis outcome score were collected. RESULTS: The linear wear rate was statistically higher (P \textless .0001) in the cPE group (0.13503 ± 0.0630 mm/year) than in the HXLPE group (0.03059 ± 0.0084 mm/year). Postoperatively, the increase in Harris hip score was calculated at 37.64 for the entire cohort and was comparable in both groups (P = .3674). The hip and osteoarthritis outcome score for pain (P = .0009), daily life activities (P = .0016), and quality of life (P = .0179) were significantly higher in the HXLPE group, with, between groups, a difference inferior to the reported minimal clinical important difference. Three patients exhibited signs of periprosthetic osteolysis in the cPE group, one on the femoral side and two on the acetabular side. None were observed in the HXLPE group. No revision for aseptic loosening was reported in both cohorts. CONCLUSION: Patients partaking in impact sports and receiving a ceramic-on-HXLPE THA demonstrated lower wear and osteolysis rates than those having a ceramic-on-cPE THA, with similar functional results.