The Journal of Arthroplasty , Volume 33 , Issue 10 , 3231 - 3237

Risk Factors Associated With Early Complications of Revision Surgery for Head-Neck Taper Corrosion in Metal-on-Polyethylene Total Hip Arthroplasty

Kwon, Young-Min et al.


Adverse local tissue reactions (ALTRs) due to tribocorrosion of head-neck taper junctions in contemporary metal-on-polyethylene (MoP) total hip arthroplasty (THA) are emerging as an important reason for failure requiring revision surgery. This study aimed at: (1) reporting early complication rates and outcome, and (2) identifying risk factors associated with complications of revision surgery for head-neck taper corrosion in patients with MoP THA.


Forty consecutive revision surgeries in 39 patients (male, 16; female, 23) with MoP THA were evaluated. The follow-up period after revision was a minimum of 14 months (range, 14–45). The indication for revision surgery was the presence of symptomatic ALTR on magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) with elevated metal ion levels.


The overall complication rate was 25% and the reoperation rate was 10%. The median serum level of cobalt ions decreased significantly 8.2 μg/L (1.2-56.1 μg/L) pre-revision to 3.1 μg/L (0.2-14.0 μg/L) post-revision (P < .01). High fretting and corrosion grades (Goldberg score ≥ 3) were observed in 82% of retrieved implants. MRI findings of solid lesion(s) with abductor deficiency (P < .01) and intraoperative tissue damage at revision (P = .02) were significantly associated with post-revision complications.


A high rate of early complications (25%) and re-revisions (10%) was observed after revision of ALTR associated with head-neck taper corrosion. Pre-revision MRI findings of solid lesion(s) with abductor deficiency and intraoperative tissue damage were risk factors associated with the occurrence of a complication after revision surgery. This information provides clinically useful information for clinical decision-making and preoperative counseling of MoP THA patients undergoing revision surgery for head-neck taper corrosion.

Download article