Histological evaluation of the acetabular labrum after bipolar hip hemiarthroplasty: a case report


We report herein the microstructure of the acetabular labrum obtained from a patient with stem loosening but without bipolar cup migration who had undergone hemiarthroplasty for femoral neck fracture 18 years ago. We used light and scanning electron microscopy to investigate the influence of bipolar cup on acetabular labrum in vivo. Deparaffinized blocks were treated with 2 N NaOH to digest the cell matrix, allowing the collagen fibers, constituting the acetabular labrum, to be observed under scanning electron microscopy. Although chondrocyte atrophy was seen, the basic structure was not different from the normal tissue images of the elderly. However, in the deep part of the acetabular labrum, there was an area that was not stained with Alcian blue observed with light microscopy, and there was an amorphous tissue without type II collagen fibrils observed with scanning electron microscopy. These findings proved that the acetabular labrum has partially degenerated over the long term after bipolar hemiarthroplasty, and that the acetabular labrum can survive in vivo in such a condition. Given that hemiarthroplasty has a possibility to preserve the face-to-face tissue in the long term in vivo, it may be one of the valuable options for modern or future joint reconstruction surgery.

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Correspondence to Nobuhiro Kaku.

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Kaku, N., Shimada, T., Nogami, R. et al. Histological evaluation of the acetabular labrum after bipolar hip hemiarthroplasty: a case report. Med Mol Morphol (2020).

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  • Bipolar hemiarthroplasty
  • Acetabular labrum
  • Microstructure
  • Scanning electron microscopy
  • Chondrocyte
  • Collagen fibrils
  • Collagen fibers