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15.10.2015 | Symposium: The Hip From Childhood to Adolescence | Ausgabe 5/2016

Clinical Orthopaedics and Related Research® 5/2016

Is Age or Surgical Approach Associated With Osteonecrosis in Patients With Developmental Dysplasia of the Hip? A Meta-analysis

Clinical Orthopaedics and Related Research® > Ausgabe 5/2016
MD Eduardo N. Novais, BA Mary K. Hill, BA Patrick M. Carry, MS, PhD Patricia C. Heyn
Wichtige Hinweise
Each author certifies that he or she has no commercial associations (eg, consultancies, stock ownership, equity interest, patent/licensing arrangements, etc) that might pose a conflict of interest in connection with the submitted article.
All ICMJE Conflict of Interest Forms for authors and Clinical Orthopaedics and Related Research ® editors and board members are on file with the publication and can be viewed on request.
Each author certifies that his or her institution approved or waived approval for the human protocol for this investigation and that all investigations were conducted in conformity with ethical principles of research.
This study was conducted at Children’s Hospital Colorado, Aurora, CO, USA.
A comment to this article is available at http://​dx.​doi.​org/​10.​1007/​s11999-015-4633-y.



Osteonecrosis of the femoral head is a major complication that negatively impacts the clinical and radiographic long-term outcome after treatment of developmental hip dysplasia (DDH). There are conflicting results in the literature whether age at the time of closed or open reduction and a specific surgical approach are associated with osteonecrosis. Better understanding of the impact of age at reduction and surgical approach is important to reduce the risk of osteonecrosis in patients with DDH.


We aimed to evaluate the association between occurrence of osteonecrosis and (1) age at closed reduction; (2) age at open reduction; and (3) medial versus anterior operative approaches.


A systematic review identified studies reporting osteonecrosis occurrence after treatment of DDH and at least 2 years of followup. This study was conducted in accordance with the Preferred Reporting Items for Systematic Reviews and Meta-Analyses statement. Methodologic quality was assessed using the methodologic index for nonrandomized studies. Generalized logistic models were used to estimate pooled odds ratios (ORs) in the meta-analysis. Sixty-six studies were included in the systematic review and 24 in the meta-analysis. Data on 481 hips treated by closed reduction and 584 hips treated by open reduction were available to evaluate the association between osteonecrosis and age. The association between osteonecrosis and operative approach was assessed using data on 364 hips treated by medial open reduction and 220 hips treated by anterior open reduction.


Age at reduction (> 12 months versus ≤ 12 months) was not associated with osteonecrosis after closed reduction (OR, 1.1; 95% confidence interval [CI], 0.4–3.2; p = 0.9) or open reduction (OR, 1.1; 95% CI, 0.7–1.9; p = 0.66). The overall, adjusted incidence of osteonecrosis (≥ Grade II) was 8.0% (95% CI, 2.8%–20.6%) among patients treated with closed reduction at or before 12 months of age and 8.4% (95% CI, 3.0%–21.5%) among those treated after 12 months. Similarly, the odds of osteonecrosis after open reduction did not differ between patients treated after the age of 12 months compared with those treated at or before 12 months (OR, 1.1; 95% CI, 0.7–1.9; p = 0.7). The incidence of osteonecrosis (≥ Grade II) was 18.3% (95% CI, 11.7%–27.4%) among patients who had index open reduction at or before 12 months of age and 20.0% (95% CI, 13.1%–29.4%) among those who had index open reduction after 12 months of age. Among hips treated with open reductions, there was no difference in osteonecrosis after medial versus anterior approaches (18.7% medial versus 19.6% anterior; OR, 1.1; 95% CI, 0.5–2.2; p = 0.9). Conclusions We did not find an association between closed or open reduction performed at or before 12 months of age and an increased risk of osteonecrosis of the femoral head. Delayed treatment past 1 year of age as a strategy to reduce the development of osteonecrosis was not supported by this meta-analysis. Open reduction through a medial or anterior approach may be recommended based on surgeon’s preference, because we found no association between development of osteonecrosis and the type of surgical approach. However, many of the studies in the current literature are nonrandomized Level III or IV observational studies of inconsistent quality. Higher quality evidence is needed to better understand the effects of age at reduction and operative approach on the development of osteonecrosis after DDH treatment.

Level of Evidence

Level III, therapeutic study.

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