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Systematic Review

The effect of antibiotic-loaded bone cement on risk of revision following hip and knee arthroplasty

a systematic review and meta-analysis

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This study aimed to compare the effect of antibiotic-loaded bone cement (ALBC) versus plain bone cement (PBC) on revision rates for periprosthetic joint infection (PJI) and all-cause revisions following primary elective total hip arthroplasty (THA) and total knee arthroplasty (TKA).


MEDLINE, Embase, Web of Science, and Cochrane databases were systematically searched for studies comparing ALBC versus PBC, reporting on revision rates for PJI or all-cause revision following primary elective THA or TKA. A random-effects meta-analysis was performed. The study was registered in the International Prospective Register of Systematic Reviews (PROSPERO ID CRD42018107691).


Nine studies and one registry report were identified, enabling the inclusion of 371,977 THA and 671,246 TKA. Pooled analysis for THA demonstrated ALBC was protective against revision for PJI compared with PBC (relative risk (RR) 0.66, 95% confidence interval (CI) 0.56 to 0.77; p < 0.001), however, no differences were seen for all-cause revision rate (RR 0.62, 95% CI 0.35 to 1.09; p = 0.100). For TKA, there were no significant differences in revision rates for PJI or all causes between ALBC and PBC (RR 0.92, 95% CI 0.59 to 1.45; p = 0.730, and RR 0.73, 95% CI 0.53 to 1.02; p = 0.060, respectively).


ALBC demonstrated a protective effect against revision for PJI compared with PBC in THA with no difference in all-cause revisions. No differences in revision rates for PJI and all-cause revision between ALBC and PBC for TKA were observed.

Cite this article: Bone Joint J 2021;103-B(1):7–15.

Correspondence should be sent to Muhamed M. Farhan-Alanie. E-mail:

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