Is there a role for femoral offset restoration during total hip arthroplasty? A systematic review.

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Benefits of femoral offset restoration during total hip arthroplasty should be the reduction of bearing surfaces wear, implant loosening and dislocation rates. Modular neck stems ensure offset customization but fretting corrosion and catastrophic failures are well-documented complications. Since clinical evidences are needed to substantiate the effectiveness of femoral offset restoration and promote modular neck choice, we systematically reviewed the literature to ascertain whether femoral offset itself has a proven clinical influence: (1) on bearing surfaces wear, (2) implant loosening, (3) and dislocation rates. A systematic literature screening was conducted to find papers dealing with the influence of femoral offset on wear, dislocation and loosening, including articles with conventional radiographic femoral offset assessment and with comparative design. Observational studies, case reports, instructional course lectures, cadaveric and animal studies as well as biomechanical studies, letters to the editor, surgical techniques or technical notes were all excluded. No limits about publication date were supplied but only papers in English were taken into account. Data were extracted into an anonymous spreadsheet. Offset values, dislocation rates, wear rates, follow-up and surgical approaches were all detailed. Ten manuscripts were finally selected. A statistically significant correlation between femoral offset restoration and the reduction of conventional ultrahigh-molecular-weight polyethylene wear was found in two out of three papers investigating this issue, but no correlations were found between femoral offset and dislocation rates or implant loosening. Femoral offset modification influences ultrahigh-molecular-weight polyethylene liners wear, but no correlation was found with dislocation rates or implant loosening. Advantages on wear can be counterbalanced by the use of hard bearing surfaces or highly cross-linked polyethylene liners, besides the availability of larger femoral heads improving implant stability further reduces the importance of femoral offset restoration by means of modularity. We believe that efforts in restoring femoral offset during total hip arthroplasty do not translate into tangible clinical profits and consequently, we do not advise the routinely usage of modular neck stems in total hip arthroplasty.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)349-355
Number of pages7
JournalOrthopaedics and Traumatology: Surgery and Research
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - May 2017


  • Femoral Offset
  • Total hip arthroplasty
  • Loosening
  • Wear
  • Dislocation


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