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When the Oxford unicompartmental meniscal bearing arthroplasty is used in the lateral compartment of the knee, 10% of the bearings dislocate. A radiological review was carried out to establish if dislocation was related to surgical technique. The postoperative radiographs of 46 lateral unicompartmental arthroplasties were analysed. Five variables which related to the position and alignment of the components were measured. Dislocations occurred in six knees. Only one of the five variables, the proximal tibial varus angle, had a statistically significant relationship to dislocation. This variable quantifies the height of the lateral joint line. The mean proximal tibial varus angle for knees the bearings of which had dislocated was 9° and for those which had not it was 5°. In both groups it was greater than would be expected in the normal knee (3°). Our study suggests that a high proximal tibial varus angle is associated with dislocation. The surgical technique should be modified to account for this, with care being taken to avoid damage to or over-distraction of the lateral soft tissues.

Original publication




Journal article


The journal of bone and joint surgery. british volume


British Editorial Society of Bone & Joint Surgery

Publication Date





653 - 657