Background and purpose: Hydroxyapatite (HA) is widely used as a coating for uncemented total hip arthroplasty components. This has been suggested to improve implant ingrowth and long-term stability. However, the evidence behind the use of HA coating on femoral stems is ambiguous. We investigated survival of an uncemented, tapered titanium femoral stem that was available either with or without HA coating (Bi-Metric).
Patients and methods: The stem had been used in 4,772 total hip arthroplasties (THAs) in 4,169 patients registered in the Swedish Hip Arthroplasty Register between 1992 and 2009. 59% of the stems investigated were coated with HA and 41% were uncoated. Kaplan-Meier survival analysis and a Cox regression model with adjustment for age, sex, primary diagnosis, and the type of cup fixation were used to calculate survival rates and adjusted risk ratios (RRs) of the risk of revision for various reasons.
Results: The 10-year survival rates of the HA-coated version and the uncoated version were about equal when we used revision for any reason as the endpoint: 98% (95% CI: 98-99) and 98% (CI: 97-99), respectively. A Cox regression model adjusting for the covariates mentioned above showed that the presence of HA coating did not have any influence on the risk of stem revision for any reason (RR = 1.0, 95% CI: 0.6-1.6) or due to aseptic loosening (RR = 0.5, CI: 0.2-1.5). There was no effect of HA coating on the risk of stem revision due to infection, dislocation, or fracture.
Interpretation: The uncemented Bi-Metric stem showed excellent 10-year survival. Our findings do not support the use of HA coating on this stem to enhance implant survival.
2011. Vol. 82, no 4, 399-404 p.