Hammering Force during Cementless Total Hip Arthroplasty and Risk of Microfracture. HIP International. 2011;21(3):330-335.

Hammering Force during Cementless Total Hip Arthroplasty and Risk of Microfracture

Sakai R, Takahashi A, Takahira N, et al.

During cementless stem fixation, impaction of the stem is occasionally complicated by bony injuries. Small fractures not visible to the eye during surgery or on post-operative radiographs may remain undetected, and the incidence of such injuries may be underestimated.


Employing the same techniques as those employed during total hip arthroplasty, we implanted cementless stems into artificial femora, with equivalent mechanical characteristics to living femora. The hammering force applied to the femur and the displacement of the stem and femur were measured using a load sensor and imaging, respectively. The von Mises stress generated in the femur during cementless stem press-fixation was also measured using finite element analysis.


Average hammering force under these conditions (9.25 kN) was sufficient to cause damage to the artificial femur. The first two of eight hammer strikes caused most displacement of the stem. The von Mises stresses generated by the first and second hammer strikes were 31 and 68 MPa, respectively. Applying a high average hammering force to the stem after displacement has ceased probably contributes to the generation of intraoperative fractures during cementless stem fixation.


Given that two strikes appeared to be sufficient, we believe that hammering force should be reduced to a micro-adjustment level after the second hit.

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