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The Journal of Bone & Joint Surgery British Volume
Vol. 88-B, Issue 11 | Pages 1508 - 1512
1 Nov 2006
Wimsey S Pickard R Shaw G

Magnification of anteroposterior radiographs of the pelvis is variable. To improve the accuracy of templating, reliable and radiographer-friendly methods of scaling are necessary. We assessed two methods of scaling digital radiographs of the pelvis: placing a coin of known diameter in the plane of interest between the patient’s thighs, and using a caliper to measure the bony width of the pelvis. A total of 39 patients who had recently undergone hemiarthroplasty of the hip or total hip replacement were enrolled in the study. The accuracy of the methods was assessed by comparing the actual diameter of the head of the prosthesis with the measured on-screen value. The coin method was within a mean of 1.12% (0% to 2.38%) of the actual measurement, the caliper group within 6.99% (0% to 16.67%). The coin method was significantly more accurate (p < 0.001). It was also reliable and radiographer friendly. We recommend it as the method of choice for scaling radiographs of the pelvis before hip surgery.