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Should patient age thresholds dictate fixation strategy in total hip arthroplasty?

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Total hip arthroplasty (THA) is a very successful and cost-effective operation, yet debate continues about the optimum fixation philosophy in different age groups. The concept of the 'cementless paradox' and the UK 'Getting it Right First Time' initiative encourage increased use of cemented fixation due to purported lower revision rates, especially in elderly patients, and decreased cost.


In a high-volume, tertiary referral centre, we identified 10,112 THAs from a prospectively collected database, including 1,699 cemented THAs, 5,782 hybrid THAs, and 2,631 cementless THAs. The endpoint was revision for any reason. Secondary analysis included examination of implant survivorship in patients aged over 70 years, over 75 years, and over 80 years at primary THA.


Cemented fixation had the lowest implant survival in all age groups, with a total ten-year survivorship of 97.0% (95% confidence interval (CI) 95.8 to 97.8) in the cemented group, 97.6% (95% CI 96.9 to 98.1) in the hybrid group, and 97.9% (95% CI 96.9 to 98.6) in the cementless group. This was not statistically significant (p = 0.092). There was no age group where cemented fixation outperformed hybrid or cementless fixation.


While all fixation techniques performed well at long-term follow-up, cemented fixation was associated with the lowest implant survival in all age groups, including in more elderly patients. We recommend that surgeons should carefully monitor their own outcomes and use fixation techniques that they are familiar with, and deliver the best outcomes in their own hands.

Cite this article: Bone Joint J 2022;104-B(2):206–211.

Correspondence should be sent to Benjamin V. Bloch. E-mail:

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