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Abstract

  1. Top of page
  2. Abstract
  3. INTRODUCTION
  4. PARTICIPANTS AND METHODS
  5. RESULTS
  6. DISCUSSION
  7. AUTHOR CONTRIBUTIONS
  8. Acknowledgments
  9. REFERENCES

Objective

To investigate hip shape by active shape modeling (ASM) as a potential predictor of incident radiographic hip osteoarthritis (RHOA) and symptomatic hip osteoarthritis (SRHOA).

Methods

All hips developing RHOA from baseline (Kellgren/Lawrence [K/L] grade 0/1) to mean 6-year followup (K/L grade ≥2, 190 hips) and 1:1 control hips (K/L grade 0/1 at both times, 192 hips) were included. Proximal femur shape was defined on baseline anteroposterior pelvis radiographs and submitted to ASM, producing a mean shape and continuous variables representing independent modes of shape variation. Mode scores (n = 14, explaining 95% of shape variance) were simultaneously included in logistic regression models with incident RHOA and SRHOA as dependent variables, adjusted for intraperson correlations, sex, race, body mass index (BMI), baseline K/L grade, and/or symptoms.

Results

We evaluated 382 hips from 342 individuals: 61% women and 83% white, with mean age 62 years and mean BMI 29 kg/m2. Several modes differed by sex and race, but no modes were associated with incident RHOA overall. Among men only, modes 1 and 2 were significantly associated (for a 1-SD decrease in mode 1 score: odds ratio [OR] 1.7 [95% confidence interval (95% CI) 1.1–2.5] and for a 1-SD increase in mode 2 score: OR 1.5 [95% CI 1.0–2.2]) with incident RHOA. A 1-SD decrease in mode 2 or 3 score increased the odds of SRHOA by 50%.

Conclusion

This study confirms other reports that variations in proximal femur shape have a modest association with incident hip OA. The observation of proximal femur shape associations with hip symptoms requires further investigation.


INTRODUCTION

  1. Top of page
  2. Abstract
  3. INTRODUCTION
  4. PARTICIPANTS AND METHODS
  5. RESULTS
  6. DISCUSSION
  7. AUTHOR CONTRIBUTIONS
  8. Acknowledgments
  9. REFERENCES

Hip osteoarthritis (OA) leads to the majority of total hip arthroplasty (THA) procedures in the US and the rate of hospitalization for THA is rising, increasing 33% from 1997 to 2009 ([1]). Estimates of the prevalence of radiographic hip OA (RHOA) range widely, from <1% to 27% of adults ([2]). Symptomatic radiographic hip OA (SRHOA) is less well-studied but clearly less frequent than RHOA, and estimates of both are dependent on the definitions used ([3]). At the baseline visit (1991–1997) of the Johnston County Osteoarthritis (JoCo OA) Project, 27% of participants had RHOA (Kellgren/Lawrence [K/L] grade of ≥2) and nearly 10% had SRHOA (K/L grade ≥2 with symptoms present) ([4]). Alterations in hip morphology, such as acetabular dysplasia and femoroacetabular impingement, have gained attention recently as potential risk factors for the development of RHOA ([5-9]). Early recognition of individuals at risk for hip OA based on such morphologic characteristics could allow early preventative interventions, encourage enrollment, or improve stratification in randomized clinical trials of therapeutic modalities.

For the purpose of epidemiologic research in large cohorts, such morphologic alterations are typically assessed using visual and simple geometric measures on anteroposterior hip radiographs, which only include one aspect of hip shape at a time. Active shape modeling (ASM) is a method to model shape variation from a set of images, providing a way to model the shape of the proximal femoral head as a whole and to compare mean shapes and variations in shape between groups using mode scores. Gregory et al, the first to apply ASM in RHOA, used radiographs from the Rotterdam study ([10]). They found differences in mode scores for the femoral head at baseline between those hips that developed RHOA after 6 years of followup and those that did not. They also identified changes in hip morphology over time in hips developing RHOA, but not in control hips. Lynch et al used a similar but more comprehensive model on radiographs from the Study of Osteoporotic Fractures (SOF) and identified several modes that were associated with incident RHOA after 8 years of followup ([11]). A more extensive ASM, including points along the proximal femur, acetabulum, and pelvis has been applied to hip radiographs from the familial Genetics, Osteoarthritis, and Progression (GARP) study and the prospective Cohort Hip and Cohort Knee (CHECK) study ([12, 13]). In the GARP study, 4 shape modes were associated with prevalent RHOA; mode scores were generally more highly correlated within-persons (right and left hip) than between sibling pairs ([12]). Agricola et al, using data from the CHECK study, found that 5 shape modes were associated with progression to THA in 5 years ([13]).

Studies of ASM to date have used white populations, either primarily or exclusively among women, and have focused on RHOA or THA. In the JoCo OA Project, African Americans compared with whites had a similar but slightly higher prevalence of RHOA (32% versus 27%) and SRHOA (12% versus 9%) ([4]), and were found to have individual radiographic features of RHOA that may predict progression ([14]) but were less likely to develop RHOA ([15]). Racial differences in dysplasia and impingement have recently been reported between white and Chinese women ([16]). The present analysis uses data from the JoCo OA Project, a longitudinal, community-based cohort that includes African American and white men and women. Using a nested case–control study design, our aim was to use ASM (after the methods of Lynch et al;[11]) to describe baseline proximal femur shape by sex and race, and to determine the associations between femur shape and incident RHOA and SRHOA.

Box 1. Significance & Innovations

  • Hip morphology likely contributes to hip osteoarthritis (OA) risk.
  • Active shape modeling allows a comprehensive comparison of shape characteristics on hip radiographs.
  • Variations in shape were found at baseline by sex and race and in those who do or do not develop incident radiographic or symptomatic hip OA at followup.

PARTICIPANTS AND METHODS

  1. Top of page
  2. Abstract
  3. INTRODUCTION
  4. PARTICIPANTS AND METHODS
  5. RESULTS
  6. DISCUSSION
  7. AUTHOR CONTRIBUTIONS
  8. Acknowledgments
  9. REFERENCES

Participants

Data were from the JoCo OA Project, an ongoing community-based study of OA and its risk factors in Johnston County, North Carolina. The recruitment of participants and overall project design have been detailed elsewhere ([17]). In brief, the JoCo OA Project is a prospective, longitudinal cohort study in African American and white men and women ages ≥45 years, who were residents of 1 of 6 Johnston County townships for at least 1 year and capable of completing the study protocol. All participants completed informed consent followed by 2 home interviews and a clinic visit where radiographic and physical examinations were performed. The current analysis is a case–control study nested in the parent cohort, using baseline data collected from 1991–1997 and first followup data from 1999–2004. The JoCo OA Project has been continuously approved by the Institutional Review Boards of the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Radiographs

All men and women at least age 50 years had standardized supine anteroposterior pelvis radiographs taken with the feet in 15 degrees of internal rotation, first at baseline and then at followup after a mean ± SD of 6 ± 1.4 years. Women age <50 years did not have pelvic radiography to avoid pelvic area radiation and are not included in these analyses. Hip radiographs were read paired for K/L grades without knowledge of participant clinical status or chronological order by a single musculoskeletal radiologist (JBR) with high inter- and intrarater reliability (κ = 0.859 and 0.886, respectively [18]) using the K/L radiographic atlas for overall hip radiographic grades ([19]), such that hips with a small osteophyte of doubtful significance were graded 1, those with a definite osteophyte but no joint space narrowing received a K/L grade of 2, those with definite joint space narrowing received a K/L grade of 3, or a grade of 4 if sclerosis was also present ([14]).

Symptoms

Symptoms were determined based upon the answer to the question, “On MOST days do you have pain/aching/stiffness in your right/left hip?” followed by “Is the pain in your right/left hip mild, moderate, or severe?”

Definitions of outcomes

RHOA was defined as K/L grade ≥2. Incident RHOA was defined in hips with a baseline K/L grade of 0 or 1 and a followup K/L grade of ≥2. As only 2 cases of incident joint replacement were observed, these were not included in the analysis. SRHOA was defined when both RHOA and symptoms were present in the same hip. Incident SRHOA was defined in hips that developed incident RHOA and had reported symptoms at followup.

Case and control selection

Of the 1,726 individuals with paired radiographic data from both baseline and followup time points and after exclusion of hips with prevalent RHOA at baseline, 193 hips developed incident RHOA. All case hips were selected, along with 1:1 control hips (those without RHOA at either baseline or followup), in approximately equal numbers from the 4 race-by-sex strata. Four hips (3 case hips and 1 control hip) were unsuitable for ASM analysis as the required anatomic landmarks were not captured in the image (usually greater or lesser trochanters) and were excluded, resulting in a total analysis sample of 190 case hips and 192 control hips in 342 individuals. Of the incident RHOA cases, there were 55 cases of incident SRHOA and all other hips (n = 326, 1 hip was missing symptoms data) were included as controls for SRHOA. The case and control definitions were hip specific such that both hips could be included from 1 individual in any combination (n = 40 people with both hips included).

Covariates

Self-reported sex and race were obtained during home interviews. Height (cm) and weight (kg) measured during the baseline clinic visit were used to calculate body mass index (BMI). Baseline K/L grade and hip symptoms at baseline were also used as covariates.

Analysis

All 680 hips suitable for ASM from these 342 individuals were used to build the ASM model using the method of Cootes et al ([20]) as adapted by Lynch et al ([11]). The shape of the proximal femur was defined on baseline pelvis radiographs for all hips by a trained reader (AEN) who placed landmark points to mark the femoral shaft at the level of the lesser trochanter, the femoral neck, a circle fitting the femoral head, and 2 points at the most superior and lateral points of the greater trochanter. The software then displayed the best matching femoral contour from a library of shape templates; this contour was manually adjusted by the reader to match the actual hip shape. Sixty equidistant landmark points (automatically created from the final fitted contour) were input into the ASM (10 between the lesser trochanter and femoral neck, 30 around the femoral head, and 20 around the greater trochanter and femoral shaft) (Figure 1). The ASM produced a mean shape and a set of continuous variables representing independent modes of variation in that shape, using principal components analysis. Reliability of the measurements was assessed by determining the number of points that were within 2–3 mm by a single reader (AEN) placing the points twice (n = 30 hips, 1,800 total points) and between 2 independent, uncalibrated readers (n = 33 hips, 1,980 total points). We also determined intraclass correlation coefficients (ICCs) for intra- and interreader reliability of mode scores, and within-person between hips for each mode using the method of Shrout and Fleiss ([21]) via icc23, a user-defined program in Stata, version 11.

image

Figure 1. Sixty landmark points used by active shape modeling.

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Scores for modes of variation that together explained 95% of the total shape variance were simultaneously entered in logistic regression models as independent predictors of the outcomes; models were used to identify baseline associations between modes with race and sex, and longitudinal associations with incident RHOA and incident SRHOA. As all modes were examined in a single model, no correction for multiple comparisons was applied. The ASM scales each shape prior to applying the statistical model, so any effect due to the overall size of the femur is removed. The association of modes with incident hip outcomes was tested with OA case or control status as the outcome, adjusting for intraperson correlations (using the cluster option in Stata), sex, race, baseline BMI, K/L grade, and/or baseline symptoms. Prespecified analyses stratified by sex, race, and baseline symptoms were also performed.

RESULTS

  1. Top of page
  2. Abstract
  3. INTRODUCTION
  4. PARTICIPANTS AND METHODS
  5. RESULTS
  6. DISCUSSION
  7. AUTHOR CONTRIBUTIONS
  8. Acknowledgments
  9. REFERENCES

The case–control sample (n = 342 persons, n = 382 hips) (Table 1) consisted of 39% men and 18% African Americans, with a mean age of 62 years and mean baseline BMI of 29 kg/m2. Participants had an average of 6 years (range 4–11 years) of followup time between visits. Hips included as RHOA controls were from younger participants and more often had baseline symptoms and a baseline K/L grade of 0 compared with incident RHOA case hips. Symptomatic RHOA case hips were infrequently from African American participants, had more frequent baseline symptoms, and were less likely to have a baseline K/L grade of 0 compared with control hips for SRHOA.

Table 1. Baseline descriptors for included individuals and hips, by case–control status for incident RHOA and SRHOA*
 IndividualsHips (n = 382)
Overall (n = 342)RHOA controls (n = 192)RHOA cases (n = 190)PaSRHOA controls (n = 326)SRHOA cases (n = 55)P
  1. Values are the number (percentage) unless indicated otherwise. RHOA = radiographic hip osteoarthritis; SRHOA = symptomatic radiographic hip OA; K/L = Kellgren/Lawrence; BMI = body mass index.

  2. a

    No comparisons performed for the matching variables (sex and race) for RHOA. P values assessed using univariable models with cluster option to account for intraperson correlations.

Male132 (38.6)74 (38.5)74 (38.9)127 (39.0)20 (36.4)0.724
African American60 (17.5)33 (17.2)32 (16.8)60 (18.4)4 (7.3)0.048
Present hip symptoms119 (35.1)79 (41.1)53 (27.9)0.007101 (31.0)30 (54.5)0.002
K/L grade of 069 (18.1)47 (24.4)22 (11.6)0.00364 (19.6)5 (9.1)0.064
Age, mean ± SD years61.7 ± 9.060.4 ± 8.663.0 ± 9.20.00661.5 ± 8.962.9 ± 9.40.330
BMI, mean ± SD kg/m229.1 ± 5.929.1 ± 5.929.2 ± 6.00.96229.0 ± 5.930.3 ± 5.60.089
Followup, mean ± SD years6.0 ± 1.45.9 ± 1.36.0 ± 1.50.8636.0 ± 1.45.9 ± 1.50.935

Fourteen modes were needed to account for 95% of the total variance in shape among all 680 hips available for ASM (Table 2). Intrareader agreement on point placement within 2 mm was 97%; interreader agreement was 84% within 2 mm and 91% within 3 mm. The range of intra- and interreader ICCs for the 14 mode scores was 0.57–0.96 and 0.70–0.99, respectively; for comparisons between hips within a person, ICCs ranged from 0.45–0.79. A 2-SD change in mode shape, for most modes, represented a change of more than 2 mm; the actual difference (mm) was predictably largest for the first modes, which explains the greatest proportion of variation (10 mm for mode 1, 5–6 mm for modes 2–4, and 2–3 mm for modes 5–14).

Table 2. Baseline associations between mode scores and race or sex*
ModePercentage variance explainedMode score, [UPWARDS ARROW] or [DOWNWARDS ARROW]aAfrican American (n = 60), OR (95% CI)bMode score, [UPWARDS ARROW] or [DOWNWARDS ARROW]aMale (n = 132), OR (95% CI)c
  1. OR = odds ratio; 95% CI = 95% confidence interval.

  2. a

    Association with increase ([UPWARDS ARROW]) or decrease ([DOWNWARDS ARROW]) in mode score (e.g., for mode 3, the odds of being African American [compared with white] are 73% higher for every 1-SD increase in mode 3 score; the odds of being male are 45% higher for every 1-SD decrease in mode 3 score).

  3. b

    Adjusted for sex, age, body mass index (BMI), baseline Kellgren/Lawrence (K/L) grade, and case or control status at followup; referent category = white.

  4. c

    Adjusted for race, age, BMI, baseline K/L grade, and case or control status at followup; referent category = women.

  5. d

    Statistically significant.

137.4[UPWARDS ARROW]1.04 (0.74–1.45)[DOWNWARDS ARROW]3.03 (2.00–4.55)d
216.0[DOWNWARDS ARROW]1.35 (0.93–1.92)[UPWARDS ARROW]1.29 (0.94–1.77)
312.5[UPWARDS ARROW]1.73 (1.18–2.53)d[DOWNWARDS ARROW]1.45 (1.03–2.04)d
49.9[UPWARDS ARROW]1.89 (1.30–2.77)d[DOWNWARDS ARROW]2.22 (1.47–3.33)d
55.1[DOWNWARDS ARROW]1.16 (0.83–1.61)[DOWNWARDS ARROW]1.75 (1.23–2.44)d
63.4[UPWARDS ARROW]1.20 (0.87–1.63)[DOWNWARDS ARROW]1.54 (0.99–2.38)
72.6[DOWNWARDS ARROW]1.20 (0.90–1.61)[DOWNWARDS ARROW]1.27 (0.88–1.82)
82.3[UPWARDS ARROW]1.13 (0.83–1.54)[UPWARDS ARROW]1.77 (1.34–2.35)d
91.7[UPWARDS ARROW]1.33 (0.97–1.83)[DOWNWARDS ARROW]1.54 (1.15–2.04)d
101.3[UPWARDS ARROW]1.90 (1.33–2.72)d[DOWNWARDS ARROW]1.67 (1.16–2.38)d
111.1[DOWNWARDS ARROW]1.30 (0.91–1.89)[DOWNWARDS ARROW]1.20 (0.85–1.72)
120.9[DOWNWARDS ARROW]1.11 (0.81–1.52)[UPWARDS ARROW]1.23 (0.88–1.71)
130.7[DOWNWARDS ARROW]1.37 (1.00–1.85)d[UPWARDS ARROW]1.29 (0.99–1.69)
140.6[UPWARDS ARROW]1.28 (0.93–1.76)[DOWNWARDS ARROW]1.12 (0.83–1.52)

Associations between baseline characteristics and ASM modes

At baseline (when all hips had K/L grades 0 or 1), several modes were significantly different by race and by sex, both before and after adjustment for other covariates. Modes 3, 4, and 10 were significantly associated with being African American (Table 2). For every 1-SD increase in modes 3, 4, or 10, the odds of being African American compared with white were 70–90% higher. Modes 1, 3–5, and 8–10 were associated with being male such that for every 1-SD decrease in each of modes 1, 3–5, 9, or 10, the odds of being male compared with female increased by 1.5–3 times. For every 1-SD increase in mode 8, the odds of being male compared with female were 77% higher (Table 2). Additionally, a K/L grade of 1 (compared with 0) was associated with 1-SD increases in mode 6 and 9 scores (adjusted odds ratio [OR] 1.61 [95% confidence interval (95% CI) 1.08–2.39] and adjusted OR 1.24 [95% CI 1.24–2.13], respectively), and the presence of baseline symptoms was associated with a 1-SD increase in mode 11 score only (adjusted OR 1.50 [95% CI 1.17–1.94]).

Associations between baseline ASM modes and incident RHOA

None of the modes were significantly associated with RHOA, either before or after adjustment for sex, race, age, BMI, or baseline K/L grade (Table 3). In these models, a baseline K/L grade of 1 doubled the odds of incident RHOA compared with a baseline K/L grade of 0 (adjusted OR 2.17 [95% CI 1.16–4.04]) and every year of increasing age increased the odds of developing incident RHOA by 3% (adjusted OR 1.03 [95% CI 1.01–1.06]); BMI was not associated with the outcome.

Table 3. Modes of variation with percent variance explained and associations with incident RHOA in men and women*
ModePercentage variance explainedOverall (n = 382)Men only (n = 148)Women only (n = 234)
Mode score, [UPWARDS ARROW] or [DOWNWARDS ARROW]aRHOA cases (n = 190), OR (95% CI)bMode score, [UPWARDS ARROW] or [DOWNWARDS ARROW]aMale RHOA cases, OR (95% CI)bMode score, [UPWARDS ARROW] or [DOWNWARDS ARROW]aFemale RHOA cases, OR (95% CI)b
  1. RHOA = radiographic hip osteoarthritis; OR = odds ratio; 95% CI = 95% confidence interval.

  2. a

    Association with increase ([UPWARDS ARROW]) or decrease ([DOWNWARDS ARROW]) in mode score (e.g., for mode 1, the odds of RHOA are 15% higher for every 1-SD decrease in mode 1 score overall; among men, the odds of RHOA are 66% higher for every 1-SD decrease in mode 1 score).

  3. b

    Adjusted for sex, race, age, body mass index, and baseline Kellgren/Lawrence grade.

  4. c

    Statistically significant.

137.4[DOWNWARDS ARROW]1.15 (0.90–1.47)[DOWNWARDS ARROW]1.66 (1.11–2.48)c[DOWNWARDS ARROW]1.03 (0.67–1.57)
216.0[UPWARDS ARROW]1.02 (0.82–1.28)[UPWARDS ARROW]1.49 (1.01–2.19)c[DOWNWARDS ARROW]1.21 (0.90–1.63)
312.5[DOWNWARDS ARROW]1.03 (0.83–1.28)[UPWARDS ARROW]1.30 (0.83–2.05)[DOWNWARDS ARROW]1.21 (0.91–1.60)
49.9[DOWNWARDS ARROW]1.12 (0.88–1.43)[UPWARDS ARROW]1.00 (0.68–1.47)[DOWNWARDS ARROW]1.11 (0.71–1.71)
55.1[UPWARDS ARROW]1.03 (0.82–1.29)[DOWNWARDS ARROW]1.10 (0.74–1.64)[UPWARDS ARROW]1.07 (0.78–1.46)
63.4[DOWNWARDS ARROW]1.18 (0.93–1.49)[DOWNWARDS ARROW]1.22 (0.82–1.82)[DOWNWARDS ARROW]1.07 (0.73–1.55)
72.6[DOWNWARDS ARROW]1.04 (0.83–1.30)[UPWARDS ARROW]1.07 (0.74–1.55)[DOWNWARDS ARROW]1.13 (0.82–1.57)
82.3[UPWARDS ARROW]1.00 (0.81–1.24)[UPWARDS ARROW]1.00 (0.68–1.49)[UPWARDS ARROW]1.18 (0.88–1.57)
91.7[UPWARDS ARROW]1.10 (0.88–1.38)[DOWNWARDS ARROW]1.13 (0.79–1.61)[UPWARDS ARROW]1.28 (0.94–1.75)
101.3[UPWARDS ARROW]1.01 (0.82–1.25)[DOWNWARDS ARROW]1.25 (0.89–1.74)[UPWARDS ARROW]1.15 (0.83–1.61)
111.1[UPWARDS ARROW]1.17 (0.93–1.48)[UPWARDS ARROW]1.17 (0.80–1.72)[DOWNWARDS ARROW]1.10 (0.78–1.54)
120.9[DOWNWARDS ARROW]1.12 (0.91–1.39)[UPWARDS ARROW]1.06 (0.76–1.49)[DOWNWARDS ARROW]1.30 (0.95–1.78)
130.7[UPWARDS ARROW]1.01 (0.82–1.24)[DOWNWARDS ARROW]1.05 (0.69–1.58)[UPWARDS ARROW]1.08 (0.82–1.42)
140.6[UPWARDS ARROW]1.08 (0.87–1.34)[UPWARDS ARROW]1.00 (0.70–1.43)[UPWARDS ARROW]1.21 (0.87–1.67)

In analyses stratified by sex, no modes were associated with RHOA among women (Table 3). However, among men, modes 1 and 2 (37% and 16% of total variance, respectively) were associated with incident RHOA (for a 1-SD decrease in mode 1 score: OR 1.66 [95% CI 1.11–2.48] and for a 1-SD increase in mode 2 score: OR 1.49 [95% CI 1.01–2.19]). Analyses stratified by race did not show any significant associations.

Associations between baseline ASM modes and incident SRHOA

In unadjusted models of SRHOA (Table 4), only a 1-SD decrease in mode 3 was associated with incident SRHOA (OR 1.54 [95% CI 1.13–2.10]). After adjustment for sex, race, age, BMI, baseline K/L grade, and baseline hip symptoms, 1-SD decreases in modes 2, 3, and 11 (16%, 13%, and 1% of the total variance, respectively) were significantly associated with SRHOA (Figures 2A and B and Table 4). In these models, baseline hip symptoms increased the odds of incident SRHOA (OR 3.16 [95% CI 1.71–5.85]) and African Americans compared with whites had lower odds of SRHOA (adjusted OR 0.27 [95% CI 0.09–0.84]); no other covariates were significantly associated with the outcome.

Table 4. Modes of variation with percent variance explained and associations with incident SRHOA*
ModePercent variance explainedMode score [UPWARDS ARROW] or [DOWNWARDS ARROW]aSRHOA cases (n = 55), OR (95% CI)b
  1. SRHOA = symptomatic radiographic hip osteoarthritis; OR = odds ratio; 95% CI = 95% confidence interval.

  2. a

    Association with increase ([UPWARDS ARROW]) or decrease ([DOWNWARDS ARROW]) in mode score (e.g., for mode 1, the odds of SRHOA are 11% higher for every 1-SD increase in mode 1 score).

  3. b

    Adjusted for sex, race, age, body mass index, baseline Kellgren/Lawrence grade, and baseline symptoms.

  4. c

    Statistically significant.

137.4[UPWARDS ARROW]1.11 (0.79–1.56)
216.0[DOWNWARDS ARROW]1.47 (1.03–2.08)c
312.5[DOWNWARDS ARROW]1.54 (1.09–2.17)c
49.9[UPWARDS ARROW]1.10 (0.74–1.65)
55.1[UPWARDS ARROW]1.26 (0.92–1.71)
63.4[UPWARDS ARROW]1.07 (0.77–1.48)
72.6[DOWNWARDS ARROW]1.03 (0.76–1.41)
82.3[DOWNWARDS ARROW]1.08 (0.82–1.39)
91.7[UPWARDS ARROW]1.29 (0.91–1.82)
101.3[DOWNWARDS ARROW]1.12 (0.82–1.56)
111.1[DOWNWARDS ARROW]1.52 (1.05–2.17)c
120.9[UPWARDS ARROW]1.00 (0.73–1.37)
130.7[DOWNWARDS ARROW]1.18 (0.86–1.61)
140.6[UPWARDS ARROW]1.17 (0.85–1.63)
image

Figure 2. Examples of modes associated with hip outcomes. Proximal femur shape variation in modes 2 (A), 3 (B), and 6 (C). Each mode shows the mean (solid line), +2 SDs (broken line) and −2 SDs (dotted line) shapes in each mode.

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Sex and race stratification was not feasible due to small numbers for SRHOA. Analyses stratified by the presence of baseline symptoms showed a consistent association between mode 3 and incident SRHOA. Among those without baseline symptoms, a 1-SD increase in mode 6 (representing 3% of the shape variance) was associated with incident SRHOA (OR 1.94 [95% CI 1.20–3.11]), while among those with baseline symptoms, the association was with a 1-SD decrease in mode 6 (OR 2.11 [95% CI 1.28–3.50]) (Figure 2C). The association with mode 11 was seen only in the group without baseline symptoms, and in those with baseline symptoms, mode 14 (0.6% of total variance) was also associated with SRHOA (1-SD increase in mode 14; OR 1.80 [95% CI 1.06–3.07]).

DISCUSSION

  1. Top of page
  2. Abstract
  3. INTRODUCTION
  4. PARTICIPANTS AND METHODS
  5. RESULTS
  6. DISCUSSION
  7. AUTHOR CONTRIBUTIONS
  8. Acknowledgments
  9. REFERENCES

Variations in hip shape assessed using ASM were associated with sex and race at baseline and with incident RHOA in men and SRHOA in all participants at followup. We report the first comparison of proximal femur shape by ASM among African Americans and whites, finding several shape differences by race in the absence of RHOA and independent of age, BMI, or baseline K/L grade. Gregory et al identified differences between men and women only for modes 1 and 7 in their study, while several modes differed by sex in the JoCo OA Project ([10]). Variations in proximal femur shape have been used in forensic medicine for sex identification, and racial differences have been recognized as well ([22]). A recent study using 3-dimensional statistical shape analysis in normal knees also identified differences by sex and ethnicity ([23]). Given known differences in radiographic OA prevalence ([4, 17]) and in radiographic features of OA at the hip ([14]) and knee ([24]) among African Americans and whites, these findings warrant further study to determine their clinical significance.

Although it is not possible to directly compare the modes found in this study to those identified in other studies using ASM, broad comparisons are possible. In the SOF ([11]) and Rotterdam ([10]) populations, 10 modes were required to explain 95% of the total shape variance compared with 14 modes in the JoCo OA Project, 23 modes in the GARP study ([12]), and 24 modes in the CHECK study (for 90% of variance) likely due primarily to differences in the number of hips analyzed, the model used, and the number of points placed. However, our ASM methodology in the JoCo OA Project was identical to that of the SOF, suggesting that there may be true differences in the amount of variation in hip morphology in those 2 populations, possibly due to inclusion of African Americans and men in the JoCo OA Project. We found a similar within-person correlation between the 2 hips as reported in the GARP study (our ICC range: 0.45–0.79, GARP study range: 0.41–0.82).

We found few associations with incident RHOA alone, in contrast to other studies using ASM. The Rotterdam and GARP studies included hips with both prevalent and incident RHOA in the ASM, such that some of the associations between RHOA and mode scores were due to changes from the OA disease process ([10, 12]). Gregory et al addressed this by separately analyzing a group of hips that developed incident RHOA and a group of hips that had K/L grades of 0 at both baseline and 6-year followup ([10]). A lower mode 6 score (reflecting a flattened transition at the femoral neck) was found in those hips developing RHOA compared to those that did not both at baseline and followup ([10]). Lynch et al used ASM methodology identical to the current report, but for RHOA definition used a modified Croft score, which emphasizes joint space narrowing and femoral osteophytes, leading to a more stringent definition than used in the JoCo OA Project (K/L grade of ≥2) ([11]). They found associations in a population of older white women between incident RHOA and increases in 3 modes of shape variation (modes 3, 5, and 9) ([11]). Increased values of mode 3 in that study were related to a larger femoral head size and a longer femoral neck, while higher mode 5 scores were related to a larger greater trochanter and smaller femoral neck size. Higher values for mode 9 reflected a larger femoral head compared to femoral neck size along with a larger greater trochanter. In the current study, a decrease in mode 1 score was associated with RHOA in men and was related to a larger, flatter trochanter and a flattening of the transition between the femoral head and neck, features similar to mode 5 in the study by Lynch et al ([11]) and mode 6 in the study by Gregory et al ([10]). Flattening of the femoral head was also a feature of an increase in our mode 2 score, somewhat suggestive of a cam-type change of femoroacetabular impingement; in support of this, the modified triangular index height ([7]) was greater among those with positive mode 2 scores (2.83 ± 0.36 cm) compared to those with negative mode 2 scores (2.66 ± 0.33 cm; P < 0.001).

Incident SRHOA has not been assessed as an outcome in the prior ASM studies. Gregory et al included information on hip pain as a covariate but found no association between self-reported hip pain at baseline or followup and the 3 OA-associated modes of variation in their study ([10]). Agricola et al found no association between baseline shape modes and meeting clinical American College of Rheumatology criteria for hip OA after 5 years ([13]). It is possible that the addition of symptoms to RHOA may have strengthened our case definition, which for RHOA was based solely on a K/L grade of ≥2 and therefore likely represents an earlier stage of disease compared with the more stringent definition used in the SOF cohort. In the current study, 1-SD decreases in scores for each of modes 2, 3, and 11 were associated with incident SRHOA. A decrease in mode 2 score reflects alterations in the transition between the greater trochanter and femoral neck, a slight reduction in femoral neck width (for those with negative mode 2 scores, femoral neck width was 3.86 ± 0.45 cm versus 4.03 ± 0.44 cm for those with positive scores; P < 0.001), and a qualitative impression of a longer femoral neck compared to the mean shape. The variation in shape of the transition from greater trochanter to femoral neck is a feature of reduced mode 3 and 11 scores as well, while a reduction in mode 3 score also suggests a somewhat flatter femoral head. After stratification by baseline symptoms, mode 6 was associated with SRHOA but in opposite directions; an increase in mode 6 score was associated with SRHOA only in those without baseline symptoms, while there was an association with decreased mode 6 score in those with baseline symptoms. Mode 6 reflects subtle differences in the size of the greater trochanter, the length of the femoral neck, and the transition between the two. The significance of this finding is unclear and will need to be verified in other populations.

Our study has many strengths, such as the inclusion of African American and white men and women. We took advantage of the very well-characterized JoCo OA Project cohort, allowing a nested case–control design for the current study while also making future studies of longer followup and functional outcomes possible. We had standardized anteroposterior pelvis radiographs on all participants and ASM and K/L grade assessments were reliable. However, this study also has a number of limitations, including the use of K/L grades alone to define cases and controls. A more stringent definition such as that used in the SOF may provide sharper distinctions, although this is similar to defining an incident case using a K/L grade of 3, which was infrequent in the JoCo OA Project. We had a relatively small number of cases, even defining by a K/L grade of ≥2, and a very small number of incident SRHOA cases, which did not allow further subgroup stratification for this outcome. Our ASM was limited to the proximal femoral head, and inclusion of the acetabulum ([12]) may provide further insights into OA risk at the hip. Currently, our results are specific to our population; in order to generalize such findings, films from different studies and populations would need to be simultaneously submitted to ASM.

In conclusion, morphologic variations at the proximal femur, assessed by ASM, were associated with baseline characteristics such as sex and race, and with incident hip OA outcomes after 6 years of followup. Such shape variations may contribute to hip OA risk and provide another avenue of exploration to identify those at risk for this potentially debilitating condition.

AUTHOR CONTRIBUTIONS

  1. Top of page
  2. Abstract
  3. INTRODUCTION
  4. PARTICIPANTS AND METHODS
  5. RESULTS
  6. DISCUSSION
  7. AUTHOR CONTRIBUTIONS
  8. Acknowledgments
  9. REFERENCES

All authors were involved in drafting the article or revising it critically for important intellectual content, and all authors approved the final version to be submitted for publication. Dr. Nelson had full access to all of the data in the study and takes responsibility for the integrity of the data and the accuracy of the data analysis.

Study conception and design. Nelson, Lynch, Schwartz, Lane, Jordan.

Acquisition of data. Nelson, Liu, Lynch, Renner, Schwartz.

Analysis and interpretation of data. Nelson, Liu, Lynch, Schwartz, Lane, Jordan.

Acknowledgments

  1. Top of page
  2. Abstract
  3. INTRODUCTION
  4. PARTICIPANTS AND METHODS
  5. RESULTS
  6. DISCUSSION
  7. AUTHOR CONTRIBUTIONS
  8. Acknowledgments
  9. REFERENCES

The authors would like to thank the participants and staff of the Johnston County Osteoarthritis Project, without whom this work would not have been possible.

REFERENCES

  1. Top of page
  2. Abstract
  3. INTRODUCTION
  4. PARTICIPANTS AND METHODS
  5. RESULTS
  6. DISCUSSION
  7. AUTHOR CONTRIBUTIONS
  8. Acknowledgments
  9. REFERENCES
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