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Reconstruction of massive uncontained acetabular defects using allograft with cage or ring reinforcement

an assessment of the graft’s ability to restore bone stock and its impact on the outcome of re-revision

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We retrospectively reviewed 44 consecutive patients (50 hips) who underwent acetabular re-revision after a failed previous revision that had been performed using structural or morcellised allograft bone, with a cage or ring for uncontained defects. Of the 50 previous revisions, 41 cages and nine rings were used with allografts for 14 minor-column and 36 major-column defects. We routinely assessed the size of the acetabular bone defect at the time of revision and re-revision surgery. This allowed us to assess whether host bone stock was restored. We also assessed the outcome of re-revision surgery in these circumstances by means of radiological characteristics, rates of failure and modes of failure. We subsequently investigated the factors that may affect the potential for the restoration of bone stock and the durability of the re-revision reconstruction using multivariate analysis.

At the time of re-revision, there were ten host acetabula with no significant defects, 14 with contained defects, nine with minor-column, seven with major-column defects and ten with pelvic discontinuity. When bone defects at re-revision were compared with those at the previous revision, there was restoration of bone stock in 31 hips, deterioration of bone stock in nine and remained unchanged in ten. This was a significant improvement (p <  0.001). Morselised allografting at the index revision was not associated with the restoration of bone stock.

In 17 hips (34%), re-revision was possible using a simple acetabular component without allograft, augments, rings or cages. There were 47 patients with a mean follow-up of 70 months (6 to 146) available for survival analysis. Within this group, the successful cases had a minimum follow-up of two years after re-revision. There were 22 clinical or radiological failures (46.7%), 18 of which were due to aseptic loosening. The five and ten year Kaplan–Meier survival rate was 75% (95% CI, 60 to 86) and 56% (95% CI, 40 to 70) respectively with aseptic loosening as the endpoint. The rate of aseptic loosening was higher for hips with pelvic discontinuity (p = 0.049) and less when the allograft had been in place for longer periods (p = 0.040).

The use of a cage or ring over structural allograft bone for massive uncontained defects in acetabular revision can restore host bone stock and facilitate subsequent re-revision surgery to a certain extent.

Cite this article: Bone Joint J 2014;96-B:319–24.

Correspondence should be sent to Dr M. Abolghasemian; e-mail:

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