HSS Journal

, Volume 4, Issue 2, pp 107–111

Similar Wear in Total Hip Arthroplasties with Metallic or Zirconia Femoral Heads


  • Randy M. Cohn
    • Mount Sinai School of Medicine
  • Alejandro González Della Valle
    • Weill Cornell Medical College
    • The Hospital for Special Surgery
  • Margaret Peterson
    • The Hospital for Special Surgery
    • Weill Cornell Medical College
    • The Hospital for Special Surgery
Original Article

DOI: 10.1007/s11420-008-9084-5

Cite this article as:
Cohn, R.M., González Della Valle, A., Peterson, M. et al. HSS Jrnl (2008) 4: 107. doi:10.1007/s11420-008-9084-5


Ceramic femoral heads have been used in an attempt at reducing polyethylene wear of total hip arthroplasties. Clinical results with zirconia femoral heads have been mixed. This study was undertaken to compare the polyethylene wear and incidence of periprosthetic osteolysis in total hip replacements performed using a 28-mm zirconia versus a 28-mm cobalt chromium femoral head. Thirty-five hips with a 28-mm cobalt chromium head and 68 hips with a 28-mm zirconia head were evaluated after a minimum follow-up of 2 years (average, 4.0 years; range, 2.0 to 9.1 years). A monoblock acetabular component was used in all patients. Polyethylene wear was measured in serial radiographs from 58 of the hips utilizing a computer-assisted vector wear technique. Periacetabular osteolysis developed in three patients (two with a zirconia head and one with a cobalt chromium head). The total wear and the annual wear rate were 0.48 mm and 0.11 mm/year for the cobalt chromium heads and 0.53 mm and 0.14 mm/year for the zirconia heads, respectively. We found no benefit with respect to the rate of polyethylene wear or incidence of osteolysis with the use of zirconia femoral heads.


polyethylene wearzirconiacobalt chromefemoral head

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© Hospital for Special Surgery 2008