The CF 30 stem in combination with a cementless acetabulum was used at the First Department of Orthopedic Surgery in Brno in the years 1994 to 1995. From the second year following implantation, aseptic stem loosening was recorded. In order to find explanation of this early loosening, the authors, in cooperation with the Institute of Solid Mechanics, Mechatronics and Biomechanics, carried out the stress-strain analysis in a model system.
Eighty patients (31 men and 49 women) received a cemented CF30 femoral component in 1994. Of them, 16 patients underwent revision arthroplasty, three died of causes unrelated to the surgery, and four were lost to follow-up.
The final clinical and radiographic check-up was carried out in 2001. The results of a comprehensive examination were available in 57 patients with a CF30 stem. The patients were evaluated on the basis of the Harris hip score and anteroposterior radiographs of the hip. X-ray films obtained immediately after surgery and those taken at regular intervals during follow-up were compared. The following characteristics were noted: translucent lines in individual zones along the stem at the cement-bone interface; osteolysis, i. e., non-linear translucent areas, at least 5 mm long, at the cement-bone interface; and subsidence of the femoral component, i. e., migration of the stem distal to the tip of the greater trochanter.
The CF 30 stem survival curve showed that aseptic stem loosening occurred from post-implantation year 2, and increased during the following years. At 6 years and 6 months, a total of 16 patients underwent revision surgery, involving reimplantation in 14 and implant removal in 2 patients.
Potential causes of aseptic loosening: Polyethylene wear.However, no acetabular loosening was found in this group, although acetabular components are reported to become loose more often than femoral components. By comparison of the stem survival curves for Poldi and CF 30 stems it appeared that, at 6 years and 6 months, the Poldi stem survival curve showed better results. Matt surface finish of the stem. However, the link between the CF 30 stem and cement was so strong that, in all 16 revised hips, the stem was removed together with nearly a complete cement mantle. The authors therefore dismiss this as a cause. Also, in the remaining cases of CF 30 aseptic loosening, which had not been revised, radiographic evidence suggested loosening between bone and cement. The authors did not find any movement of the CF stem in its cement mantle. The stem always fitted in with the cement mantle. Erroneous surgical technique or cementing was unlikely. The procedures were performed by experienced orthopedic surgeons who used the second-generation cementing technique. In patients with a Poldi stem, the first-generation cementing method was used and the proportion of aseptic loosening at 6 years of follow-up was only 4 %. In contrast, loosening in patients with the CF 30 stem was 20 % at 6 years and 6 months postoperatively. Shape of the CF 30 stem with the intention to find a relationship between stem shape and its early aseptic loosening, the authors started cooperation with the Institute of Solid Mechanics, Mechatronics and Biomechanics at the Faculty of Mechanical Engineering, Brno University of Technology. Using the method of finite elements, they carried out the stressstrain analysis in a model system. Stress at the cement-bone interface in the CF 30 stem was higher than in the Poldi stem, and this difference was statistically significant. The authors believe that the more frequent loosening found in patients with the CF 30 stem can be accounted for by its shape.
The survival curve for the CF 30 femoral stem did not show good results, and therefore this stem is not recommended for implantation. The authors suggest that a more frequent early aseptic loosening of CF 30 stems may have been caused by its unsuitable shape.