Fifteen consecutive total hip arthroplasties (THAs) in 14 patients considered at risk for developing significant heterotopic ossification (HO) were treated postoperatively with 7.5 Gy of external beam radiation in three fractions. Eight hips in eight of the patients (Group I) had developed previous Brooker Class III or IV HO after THA and were radiated after having excision of HO in conjunction with a revision THA. Three additional hips in three patients (Group II) were radiated after primary THA, because they developed significant HO on the contralateral hip after a previous THA. The remaining four hips in three patients (Group III) were radiated after primary THA because they had bilateral hypertrophic arthritis. Precision shielding was employed to minimize the volume of tissue in the radiation field and to protect the bone-implant interface around porous-coated components and the trochanteric osteotomy sites. Of the eight hips in which Class III or IV bone was excised during revision THA (Group I), no new bone formed in five hips and in the other three hips, only Class I bone formed. No heterotopic bone formed in the remaining seven hips of Groups II and III. All six trochanteric osteotomies healed. There were no wound healing problems. There were no significant radiolucencies around any of the components and there was no radiographic evidence of implant instability. This regimen using 7.5 Gy over three fractions minimizes the radiobiologic impact, whereas the use of precision shielding minimizes the total volume of tissue treated. This regimen is an effective means of preventing significant HO after THA in high-risk patients while minimizing radiation exposure.
View details for Web of Science ID A1992JC24600030
View details for PubMedID 1611750