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Optimizing indications of impacting bone allograft transplantation in osteonecrosis of the femoral head

a mid- and long-term retrospective study

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The aim of this study was to report the medium-term outcomes of impaction bone allograft and fibular grafting for osteonecrosis of the femoral head (ONFH) and to define the optimal indications.


A total of 67 patients (77 hips) with ONFH were enrolled in a single centre retrospective review. Success of the procedure was assessed using the Harris Hip Score (HHS) and rate of revision to total hip arthroplasty (THA). Risk factors were studied, including age, aetiology, duration of hip pain, as well as two classification systems (Association Research Circulation Osseous (ARCO) and Japanese Investigation Committee (JIC) systems).


After a mean follow-up period of 8.61 years (SD 1.45), 81.3% (52/64) of enrolled cases had a good or excellent HHS at latest follow-up (declining to 76.0% (38/50) for those with more than eight years of follow-up). Overall survival was 92.1% at eight years’ follow-up (95% CI 83.2% to 96.4%). A total of 12 hips (19.0%) failed (reoperation or HHS < 70 points) at final follow-up. Rate of success was adversely affected by increasing age, duration of pain, and more severe disease as measured using the ARCO and JIC classifications, but not by aetiology of the ONFH.


We report favourable medium-term results of this procedure. Best outcomes can be expected in patients matching the following indications: younger than 40 years; less 12-month hip pain before surgery; femoral head collapse being less than 2 mm; and integrated lateral wall of femoral head.

Cite this article: Bone Joint J 2020;102-B(7):838–844.

Correspondence should be sent to Wei He. E-mail:

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