Primary stability of a cementless acetabular cup in a cohort of patient-specific Finite Element models

Dermot O'Rourke, Rami Al-Dirini, Mark Taylor

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17 Citations (Scopus)


The primary stability achieved during total hip arthroplasty determines the long-term success of cementless acetabular cups. Pre-clinical finite element testing of cups typically use a model of a single patient and assume the results can be extrapolated to the general population. This study explored the variability in predicted primary stability of a Pinnacle ® cementless acetabular cup in 103 patient-specific finite element models of the hemipelvis and examined the association between patient-related factors and the observed variability. Cups were inserted by displacement-control into the FE models and then a loading configuration simulating a complete level gait cycle was applied. The cohort showed a range of polar gap of 284–1112 μm and 95th percentile composite peak micromotion (CPM) of 18–624 μm. Regression analysis was not conclusive on the relationship between patient-related factors and primary stability. No relationship was found between polar gap and micromotion. However, when the patient-related factors were categorised into quartile groups, trends suggested higher polar gaps occurred in subjects with small and shallow acetabular geometries and cup motion during gait was affected most by low elastic modulus and high bodyweight. The variation in primary stability in the cohort for an acetabular cup with a proven clinical track record may provide benchmark data when evaluating new cup designs.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1012-1023
Number of pages12
JournalJournal of Orthopaedic Research
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - Mar 2018


  • acetabular cup
  • finite element analysis
  • patient variability
  • primary stability


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