In vivo comparative wear study of traditional and highly cross-linked polyethylene in total hip arthroplasty

David W. Manning*, P. P. Chiang, J. M. Martell, J. O. Galante, W. H. Harris

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

186 Scopus citations


In this study, we compare the in vivo wear performance of electron beam-irradiated, postirradiation-melted, highly cross-linked polyethylene (HXLPE) and traditional UHMWPE via the Martell method. Seventy hips with HXLPE performed at the Massachusetts General Hospital had 138 radiograph pairs for wear analysis and a 31.2-month average follow-up (range, 24-44 months). An age-matched, sex-matched, and body mass index-matched subgroup of 111 hips with 214 acceptable radiograph pairs and a 4-year follow-up from our previously published study on traditional polyethylene performed at Rush-Presbyterian-St. Luke's Medical Center served as a control group. Martell wear analysis was performed for each group. Overall and steady-state wear rates were compared via a specialized t test. The steady-state wear in the HXLPE arm was observed after 2.0 years, was 0.007 mm/y, and was significantly less than the steady-state wear in the traditional arm (0.174 mm/y) (P = .003). Highly cross-linked polyethylene penetration rate was not affected by sex, age, activity, or body mass index by Mann-Whitney analysis.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)880-886
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of Arthroplasty
Issue number7
StatePublished - Oct 2005


  • Bedding-in
  • Electron beam cross-linked polyethylene
  • Polyethylene wear
  • Steady-state wear
  • Traditional polyethylene

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Orthopedics and Sports Medicine


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