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Removal of Infected Canine Cemented Total Hip Prostheses Using a Femoral Window Technique


  • Presented at the American College of Veterinary Surgeons Symposium, September 21 to 24, 2000, Washington, DC.

  • Address reprint requests to Jonathan Dyce, MA, VetMB, College of Veterinary Medicine, Veterinary Teaching Hospital, The Ohio State University, 601 Vernon L. Tharp St, Columbus, OH 43210–1089.


Objective— To evaluate a femoral window technique for retrieval of cemented total hip prostheses.

Study Design— Retrospective clinical study.

Animals— Twelve dogs with infection of a cemented modular total hip prosthesis.

Methods— Implant removal was performed by an extended craniolateral approach to the hip and proximal femur without trochanteric osteotomy. The femoral cement mantle was fragmented and removed with simple orthopedic instrumentation by a lateral femoral window that was repaired using cerclage wires. Surgical technique, intraoperative and postoperative complications, bacterial culture results, histopathologic findings, and completeness of cement removal were recorded. Follow-up radiographs were taken 5 to 9 weeks postoperatively. Long-term follow-up information was obtained by client questionnaire. Functional outcome was assessed by scoring ability to stand, sit, walk, run, play, climb stairs, and get into a car.

Results— Prosthesis retrieval was performed 2 to 41 months after implantation (median, 14 months). Complete removal of femoral cement was achieved in 10 dogs. A nondisplaced femoral fissure, extending proximally from the window, was an intraoperative complication in 2 dogs. Staphylococcus spp was most commonly isolated (6 dogs) from interfacial membrane samples. Systemic antibiotic therapy, dependent on susceptibility testing, was administered for 3 to 10 weeks postoperatively. There was radiographic evidence of osteotomy healing at 5- to 9-week reassessment. Recurrence of osteomyelitis was not observed. Long-term functional outcome was considered mildly abnormal.

Conclusions— The lateral window was an effective technique for retrieval of retained femoral cement.

Clinical Relevance— Removal of an infected prosthesis using this technique generally resulted in a clinical outcome comparable to that with ab initio femoral head and neck excision.