The Journal of Arthroplasty, Volume 31, Issue 9, 1963 - 1969

High Failure Rate of Modular Exchange With a Specific Design of a Constrained Liner in High-Risk Patients Undergoing Revision Total Hip Arthroplasty

Chalmers, Brian P. et al.


Addressing recurrent instability in patients with poor bone stock and inadequate abductor tensioning remains a challenge in revision total hip arthroplasty. One treatment method is implantation of a constrained liner. The purpose of this study was to determine clinical outcomes, redislocation rate, and revisions of a focally constrained liner in a high-risk patient cohort.


Fifty-eight hips between 2008 and 2011 underwent implantation of a focally constrained liner. Nineteen were placed concurrent with acetabular component revision and 39 were placed into a well-fixed acetabular shell. Mean age was 69 years and mean number of previous ipsilateral hip surgeries was 4.2. At mean follow-up of 3.5 years, we analyzed clinical outcomes, redislocation, and revisions.


Mean Harris Hip Scores was 74. Fourteen hips (24%) were revised and 3 hips (5%) required reoperation at final follow-up. Eleven hips (19%) redislocated at a mean time to dislocation of 12.2 months; 31% (11 of 36 patients) that underwent modular exchange specifically for instability redislocated. Risk factors for redislocation included number of previous surgeries (P = .013), implantation of a 28 mm femoral head (hazards ratio 12.8), revision indication of instability (P = .04), and modular exchange with constrained liner implantation without acetabular shell revision (P = .01).


Implantation of a focally constrained liner in revision total hip arthroplasty for recurrent instability has a high failure rate, especially with a modular exchange. Although concurrent acetabular revision had a lower redislocation rate, the decision to revise a well-fixed cup should be weighed with potential complications associated with cup revision.

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