Core decompression and bone marrow aspiration concentrate grafting for osteonecrosis of the femoral head

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7 Scopus citations


BACKGROUND: Core decompression (CD) with bone marrow aspiration concentrate (BMAC) is a technique that may improve outcomes in osteonecrosis of the femoral head (ONFH). The primary aim of this study was to evaluate the radiographic progression free survival (PFS) of CD augmented with BMAC. Secondary aims were to determine the survivorship with conversion (CFS) to total hip arthroplasty (THA) as an endpoint, determine prognostic factors, and characterize the cellular quality of the BMAC.

METHODS: A retrospective cohort study of 61 femoral heads (40 patients) was performed. Patient demographics, comorbidities, BMI, smoking status, etiology, location and extent of ONFH were recorded. The primary endpoint was radiographic progression of ONFH and secondarily, conversion to THA. Additional aims were to determine predictive factors for progression and report the cellular characteristics of the BMAC. Data obtained were compared to the results of a prior randomized controlled trial comparing CD alone versus CD with polymethylmethacrylate cement (PMMA) augmentation.

RESULTS: Radiographic PFS of CD with BMAC at 2 and 5 years was 78.3% and 53.3%, respectively. The risk of progression was lower in the CD with BMAC group compared to CD alone (HR0.45, p = 0.03), however this difference no longer remained statistically significant on multivariate analysis. Conversion to total hip arthroplasty free survival (CFS) of CD with BMAC at both 2 and 5 years was 72.1% and 54.6%, respectively with no differences compared to the control groups (CD alone, CD and PMMA). The predictive factors for progression were obesity (BMI ≥ 30) and the extent of the disease as quantified by either percentage involvement, necrotic index or modified necrotic index.

CONCLUSIONS: No differences in PFS or CFS between CD with BMAC compared to CD alone or CD with PMMA were identified. Independent statistically significant predictors of progression-free survival or conversion to THA are BMI ≥ 30 and the extent of ONFH. Further research with an adequately powered randomized controlled trial is needed.


Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)54-60
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of Bone and Joint Surgery
Issue numberSuppl 2
StatePublished - Apr 6 2022

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:


  • Arthroplasty, Replacement, Hip
  • Bone Marrow/surgery
  • Decompression, Surgical/methods
  • Fatigue Syndrome, Chronic/surgery
  • Femur Head/surgery
  • Femur Head Necrosis/diagnostic imaging
  • Humans
  • Polymethyl Methacrylate
  • Retrospective Studies
  • Treatment Outcome

PubMed: MeSH publication types

  • Randomized Controlled Trial
  • Journal Article


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