FIELD OF THE INVENTION
- BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION
This invention relates generally to orthopaedic surgery and, more particularly, to a proximal femoral prosthesis facilitating an enhanced range of motion.
In total hip arthroplasty, the defective head and neck of the proximal femur are removed and replaced with a prosthetic element. Although extramedullary units are available, intramedullary prostheses are more commonly employed, which feature an elongated stem adapted for insertion and fixation within the femoral canal.
FIG. 1 is a generalized representation of a prior-art proximal femoral endoprosthesis. A head portion 102 having an outer surface 103 which is at least partially hemispherical is joined to a stem 106 through a neck portion 104. Such interconnections may be permanent and integral, or modular connections may be used in conjunction with tapered metal joints, for example.
The stem 106 defines a first axis 108 which is aligned more or less to the longitudinal axis of the femur, depending upon the style of the particular implant. The neck 104 defines a second axis 110 which intersects with the first axis 108 at a neck/shaft angle which may be varied in accordance with the physiology of the recipient or the desires of a given manufacturer. A typical neck/shaft angle α is on the order of 135°. The offset, or distance from the head portion to the axis of the stem, may also varied to achieve a desired result. A number of other variations exist, including cemented versus cementless interfaces, curved versus straight stem profiles, differently sized balls, and so forth.
- SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION
In all existing configurations, the neck is straight or, in some cases, curved upwardly (or proximally) away from a plane transverse to the axis of the stem. That is to say, a centroid drawn from a central region 112 of the head 102 to a point of intersection 111 with the stem axis 108 is straight or occasionally curved to create a convex neck surface in existing designs. Such a configuration has several shortcomings. For one, as manufacturers decrease the neck-shaft angle α to improve offset and abductor tension, patients lose movement in flexion secondary to impingement of the neck on the acetabular component.
BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS
This invention resides in proximal femoral prostheses which minimize impingement, thereby affording an enhanced range of motion as compared to existing devices. Broadly, the central portion of the neck of the inventive prosthesis is oriented downwardly relative to a straight line drawn between the ball portion and the point of interconnection to the exposed portion of the stem. Such a configuration reduces impingement in flexion/internal rotation and extension/external rotation, assuming an appropriately placed acetabular component. In the preferred embodiment, the neck is curved between the head and the neck, though, in alternative embodiments, the neck may be provided in straight and/or modular segments. The invention is compatible with neck-shaft angles, offsets, head sizes, and other dimensions commonly designated with respect to available implants. The neck may also be curved in the transverse plane adding increased anteversion or retroversion to the neck-shaft relationship.
FIG. 1 is a front-view drawing of a prior-art proximal femoral endoprosthesis having a straight neck;
FIG. 2 is a front-view drawing of a proximal femoral endoprosthesis according to the invention having a curved neck which reduces impingement;
FIG. 3 is a front-view drawing of an alternative embodiment of the invention having an anti-impingement neck provided in multiple straight segments;
FIG. 4 is a front-view drawing of a further alternative embodiment of the invention having a modular neck;
FIG. 5 is a front-view drawing of a different alternative embodiment of the invention including a modular connection between an anti-impinging neck and implant;
FIG. 6 illustrates yet a different embodiment, wherein a modular ball component connects to an integral neck/stem;
FIG. 7A is a top-view drawing illustrating how an anti-impinging neck may be curved only within the coronal plane through the head, neck and stem;
FIG. 7B illustrates how a neck according to the invention may be curved apart from, or in addition to a curve in the coronal plane so as to avoid impingement; and
DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF THE INVENTION
FIG. 7C illustrates how “curves” relative to the coronal plane need not be smooth and continuous, but may be piecewise.
Having discussed the prior-art design of FIG. 1 in the Background of the Invention, reference will now be made to FIG. 2, which illustrates a preferred embodiment of the invention from a front-view perspective. As with existing devices, a femoral endoprosthesis according to the invention features a stem (206), head or ball portion (202) and a neck 204. For the sake of reference, a straight line 210 has been drawn from a point 211 intersecting the axis of the stem and the center 212 of the ball. In contrast to existing devices, wherein the neck is either straight or curved upwardly or proximally relative to the straight line, the neck 204 of a prosthesis utilizing the invention curves downwardly or distally relative to the line.
More particularly, the centroid of the neck, which in this case is defined as the centerline 220 through the center of each cross section taken along the body of the neck is, at least the mid section (222), below or distal to the straight line 210 between the intersection 211 with the axis 208 of the of the stem and the center 212 of the ball.
Not each point of the neck according to the invention need be below or distal to the straight line, but rather, only a portion of the centerline. In addition, although the neck according to the invention is said to be curved, it need not be a smooth, continuous curve as shown in FIG. 2, but rather, may be made up of one or more straight segments such as 302 and 304, as shown in FIG. 3.
Furthermore, a prosthesis having a neck according to the invention need not be solid and integral but instead, may utilize modular segments. FIG. 4 is representative, wherein a module 402 fits to a stem through a joint having post 406, and a head portion 404 attaches to the module 402 though a mating connector 408. Other arrangements are possible, including additional and differently configured modules, so long a least a portion of the centroid through the finally assembled structure is below or distal to a straight line from the center of the ball to a point of intersection with the axis of the stem.
FIG. 5 illustrates a different alternative embodiment, wherein an anti-impinging neck component 502 is integral with a ball portion, but connects to a stem through a joint 504. FIG. 6 illustrates a different configuration, wherein the neck and stem are integral, but a modular ball 602 connects to an end of the stem through the joint 604.
Although a femoral prosthesis according to the invention may be curved only in the coronal plane, which may be defined as that plane which intersects the central portions of the head, neck and stem, as shown in FIG. 2, in particular, the neck according to the invention may also be curved relative to the coronal plane whether in a simple or compound configuration. Reference is made to FIG. 7A, which shows a top-down view of a femoral prosthesis which, according to the invention, would have the ball portion curve upwardly and away from the paper in a manner which is different from prior art configurations. But in addition to such an upward curve in the coronal plane 702, in the neck may also be curved relative to the coronal plane, whether or not it is also curved within the coronal plane. That is, the curve of the neck may be piecewise as opposed to continuous, as shown in FIG. 7C.