In 2005, we conducted a prospective randomized controlled trial that demonstrated that, compared with a standard incision, a minimal incision technique did not improve early outcomes of total hip arthroplasty (THA). There was concern that reduced exposure could compromise long-term outcome. For the current study, all surviving participants were invited to return for 10-year radiographic and clinical evaluation. Outcome scores were available for 152 patients (69.4%) from the original cohort, and radiographs were available for 126 (57.5%). The median duration of follow-up was 124 months. We did not find significant differences in functional status or radiographic outcome between the minimal and standard incision groups at 10 years. The 10-year implant survival rate was 99.1% (95% confidence interval [CI] = 97.3% to 100%) in the standard incision group and 97.9% (95% CI = 95.1% to 100%) in the minimal incision group (p = 0.57). We concluded that minimal incision THA performed by a high-volume surgeon does not compromise long-term results but offers no benefit over a standard incision.
Therapeutic Level I. See Instructions for Authors for a complete description of levels of evidence.
1Musgrave Park Hospital, Belfast, Northern Ireland, United Kingdom
aE-mail address for C. Stevenson: email@example.com