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Polyethylene particulate wear debris continues to be implicated in the aetiology of aseptic loosening following knee arthroplasty. The Oxford unicompartmental knee arthroplasty employs a spherical femoral component and a fully congruous meniscal bearing to increase contact area and theoretically reduce the potential for polyethylene wear. This study measures the in vivo ten-year linear wear of the device, using a roentgenstereophotogrammetric technique. In this in vivo study, seven medial Oxford unicompartmental prostheses, which had been implanted ten years previously were studied. Stereo pairs of radiographs were acquired for each patient and the films were analysed using a roentgen stereophotogrammetric analysis calibration and a computer-aided design model silhouette-fitting technique. Penetration of the femoral component into the original volume of the bearing was our estimate of linear wear. In addition, eight control patients were examined less than three weeks post-insertion of an Oxford prosthesis, where no wear would be expected. The control group showed no measured wear and suggested a system accuracy of 0.1 mm. At ten years, the mean linear wear rate was 0.02 mm/year. The results from this in vivo study confirm that the device has low ten-year linear wear in clinical practice. This may offer the device a survival advantage in the long term.

Original publication




Journal article


J bone joint surg br

Publication Date





1493 - 1497


Adult, Aged, Arthroplasty, Replacement, Knee, Computer-Aided Design, Female, Humans, Knee Joint, Knee Prosthesis, Male, Middle Aged, Photogrammetry, Polyethylene, Prosthesis Design, Prosthesis Failure, Radiography, Severity of Illness Index