BMC Musculoskeletal Disorders 2019 20:3

Effect of surgical approach for contralateral side hip arthroplasty in below knee amputees: a retrospective cohort study

Hong-Man Cho, Jae-Woong Seo, Hyun-Ju Lee, Sun-Do Kim, Kyu-Bok Kang, Jung-Ryul Kim and Ho-Wook Wee


The gluteus medius muscle plays a very important role in the stability of the gait, especially in patients with amputation of the lower limbs. Therefore, choosing the appropriate type of approach for hip arthroplasty is very important. Hence, this study aimed to compare the outcomes and complications between the anterolateral approach (ALA) and posterior approach (PA) for hip arthroplasty in patients with contralateral below knee amputation.


From January 1999 to November 2014, 67 patients who underwent hip arthroplasty with contralateral below knee amputation were retrospectively analyzed. The study subjects were divided into two groups: the PA group (33 cases) and the ALA group (34 cases). The results of the clinical functional recovery with Western Ontario and McMaster Universities Osteoarthritis Index (WOMAC) score, Harris Hip Score, and activity of daily living scale were compared between the two groups. During the follow-up period, complications related to gait such as fall, dislocation, and periprosthetic fractures (PPFs) were investigated.


The Harris Hip Score (p = 0.024) and the activity of the daily living scale (p = 0.043) of the ALA group were significantly lower at 3 months compared to the PA group, but no significant difference was observed between the two groups from 6 months postoperatively to the last follow-up. The WOMAC score was not significantly different between the two groups. Within 3 months after surgery, falls occurred in 3 cases in the PA group and in 11 cases in the ALA group (p = 0.019) Dislocation and PPF were caused by prosthesis-related trauma. Two dislocations and 1 PPF occurred 8 years postoperatively in the PA group. PPF occurred in 3 patients in the ALA group, of which 2 occurred within 3 months after surgery.


Orthopedic surgeons should pay particular attention in patients with hip arthroplasty on the contralateral side hip who had below knee amputation because functional recovery is delayed until 3 months after ALA compared with PA.

Download article