Ultracongruent Designs Compared to Posterior-Stabilized and Cruciate-Retaining Tibial Inserts - What Does the Evidence Tell Us? A Systematic Review and Meta-Analysis.

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BACKGROUND: Posterior-stabilized (PS) and cruciate-retaining (CR) have been the most common tibial designs used in total knee arthroplasty. Ultra-congruent (UC) inserts are becoming popular because they preserve bone without relying on the posterior cruciate ligament balance and integrity. Despite increasing use, there is no consensus on how UC inserts perform versus PS and CR designs.

METHODS: A comprehensive literature search of 5 online databases was performed for articles from January 2000 to July 2022 comparing the kinematic and clinical outcomes of PS or CR tibial inserts to UC inserts. There were nineteen studies included. There were 5 studies comparing UC to CR and 14 comparing UC to PS. Only one randomized controlled trial (RCT) was rated "good quality".

RESULTS: For CR studies, pooled analyses showed no difference in knee flexion (n = 3, P = .33) or Western Ontario and McMaster Universities Osteoarthritis Index (WOMAC) scores (n = 2, P = .58). For PS studies, meta-analyses showed better anteroposterior stability (n = 4, P < .001) and more femoral rollback (n = 2, P < .001) for PS but no difference in knee flexion (n = 9, P = .55) or medio-lateral stability (n = 2, P = .50). There was no difference with WOMAC (n = 5, P = .26), Knee Society Score (n = 3, P = .58), Knee Society Knee Score (n = 4, P = .76), or Knee Society Function Score (n = 5, P = .51).

CONCLUSION: Available data demonstrates there are no clinical differences between CR or PS and UC inserts in small short-term studies ending around 2 years after surgery. More importantly, high-quality research comparing all inserts is lacking, demonstrating a need for more uniform and longer-term studies beyond 5 years after surgery to justify increased UC usage.


This article was published in Journal of Arthroplasty.

The published version is available at https://doi.org/10.1016/j.arth.2023.05.064.

Copyright © 2023 Elsevier Inc.

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Journal of Arthroplasty

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