Influence of the change in stem length on the load transfer and bone remodelling for a cemented resurfaced femur

Bidyut Pal, Sanjay Gupta, Andrew M. R. New

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


    The effect of a short-stem femoral resurfacing component on load transfer and potential failure mechanisms has rarely been studied. The stem length has been reduced by approximately 50% as compared to the current long-stem design. Using 3-D FE models of natural and resurfaced femurs, the study is aimed at investigating the influence of a short-stem resurfacing component on load transfer and bone remodelling. Applied loading conditions include normal walking and stair climbing. The mechanical role of the stem along with implant–cement and stem–bone contact conditions was observed to be crucial. Shortening the stem length to half of the current length (long-stem) led to several favourable effects, even though the stress distributions in the implant and the cement were similar in both the cases. The short-stem implant led not only to a more physiological stress distribution but also to bone apposition (increase of 20–70% bone density) in the superior resurfaced head, when the stem–bone contact prevailed. This also led to a reduction in strain concentration in the cancellous bone around the femoral neck–component junction. The normalised peak strain in this region was lower for the short-stem design as compared to that of the long-stem one, thereby reducing the initial risk of neck fracture. The effect of strain shielding (50–75% reduction) was restricted to a small bone volume underlying the cement, which was approximately half of that of the long-stem design. Consequently, bone resorption was considerably less for the short-stem design. The short-stem design offers better prospects than the long-stem resurfacing component.
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)2908-2914
    JournalJournal of Biomechanics
    Issue number15
    Publication statusPublished - 1 Nov 2010


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