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BACKGROUND: The Oxford Unicompartmental Knee Replacement (OUKR) uses a mobile bearing to minimise wear. Bearing dislocation is a problem in the lateral compartment as the ligaments are loose in flexion. A domed tibial component has been introduced to minimise the risk of dislocation, yet they still occur, particularly medially. The aim of this mechanical study was to compare the domed and flat tibial components and to identify surgical factors that influence the risk of dislocation. METHOD: A jig was constructed to assess the amount of vertical distraction of the lateral OUKR for a dislocation to occur. Three methods of dislocation were assessed: laterally, medially, 'over the wall' and anteriorly. The study focused on medial dislocation. RESULTS: Significantly (p=0.02) greater vertical distraction was required to dislocate the bearing with the domed tibia rather than the flat. For medial dislocation bearing distance from the wall, femoral component external rotation and tibial rotation were associated with significantly less distraction for dislocation. With the optimal technique with the domed tibia the distraction required to dislocate the bearing medially was 6.4 mm, whereas with poor technique it was 4.6 mm. CONCLUSIONS: This study suggests that to minimise the risk of dislocation the domed tibia should be used. The component should be implanted so the bearing is close to the wall, but does not hit it, and in flexion the femoral and tibial components should be neutrally aligned.

Original publication




Journal article



Publication Date





304 - 309


Component positioning, Dislocation, Domed bearing, Unicompartmental knee replacement, Arthroplasty, Replacement, Knee, Humans, Knee Dislocation, Knee Prosthesis, Materials Testing, Models, Biological, Prosthesis Design, Prosthesis Fitting, Rotation, Tibia