Acta Orthopaedica, 85:2, 123-127, DOI: 10.3109/17453674.2014.889980

The effect of femoral offset modification on gait after total hip arthroplasty

Elhadi Sariali, Shahnaz Klouche, Alexandre Mouttet & Hugues Pascal-Moussellard

Background and purpose — A decrease of 15% in femoral offset (FO) has been reported to generate a weakness of the abductor muscle, but this has not been directly linked to an alteration of gait. Our hypothesis was that this 15% decrease in FO may also generate a clinically detectable alteration in the gait.

Patients and methods — We performed a prospective comparative study on 28 patients who underwent total hip arthroplasty (THA) for unilateral primary osteoarthritis. The 3D hip anatomy was analyzed preoperatively and postoperatively. 3 groups were defined according to the alteration in FO following surgery: a minimum decrease of 15% (9 patients), restored (14), and a minimum increase of 15% (5). A gait analysis was performed at 1-year follow-up using an ambulatory device. Each limb was compared to the contralateral healthy limb.

Results — In contrast to the “restored” group and the “increased” group, in the “decreased” group there was a statistically significant asymmetry between sides, with reduced range of motion and a lower maximal swing speed on the operated side.

Interpretation — A decrease in FO of 15% or more after THA leads to an alteration in the gait. We recommend 3-D preoperative planning because the FO may be underestimated by up to 20% on radiographs and it may therefore not be restored, with clinical consequences.

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