Radial head arthroplasty: A radiologic outcome study

Alice S. Ha, Jonelle M. Petscavage, Felix S. Chew

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37 Citations (SciVal)


OBJECTIVE: The purpose of this study is to provide a radiographic outcome assessment of radial head arthroplasty in correlation with clinical outcomes and to determine whether there is an association between certain patient factors and clinical and radiographic outcomes. MATERIALS AND METHODS: A 10-year retrospective review was performed to identify patients with metal radial head arthroplasty. At least two follow-up radiographs were reviewed for each patient and were correlated with clinical information. Statistical analysis included calculation of complication rates, phi coefficient for variable association with complications, and Kaplan-Meier survival. RESULTS: A total of 258 radial head implants in 244 patients were reviewed. The mean patient age was 46 years, with mean follow-up time of 12.8 months. Two hundred nineteen (84.9%) implants were unipolar in design, whereas 39 implants were bipolar. The most common indication for arthroplasty was trauma (94% acute and 2% failed internal fixation). Radiographic abnormalities included nonbridging heterotopic ossification (38.0%), secondary radiocapitellar joint osteoarthritis (27.9%), loosening (19.8%), bridging heterotopic ossification (8.9%), fracture (2.3%), and hardware dislocation (2.7%). Overall, there were 62 second surgeries for either revision or removal. Reasons for second surgery included heterotopic ossification (53.2%), synovectomy or capsulectomy (43.5%), and infection (3.2%). There was a statistically significant association between radiographic complications and the presence of patient symptoms (p < 0.05). There was no association between radiographic or clinical complications with age, sex, side, or type of arthroplasty (R < 0.001). CONCLUSION: There is a positive association between radiographic findings and patient symptoms for postoperative complications after radial head arthroplasty. By 9 months, 50% of implants showed radiographic complications.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1078-1082
Number of pages5
JournalAmerican Journal of Roentgenology
Issue number5
StatePublished - Nov 2012

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging


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