Bone remodeling adjacent to total hip replacements: A naturally occurring material design problem

Timothy P. Harrigan, James J. Hamilton

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Scopus citations


The reaction of bone to orthopedic implants is an example of a self-adjusting material which changes from a 'normal state' to an altered state, based on the mechanical features of the implant and the loads applied to it. The changes in bone around cemented and uncemented femoral total hip components are well documented, and many numerical characterizations of the material reaction to stress have attempted to mimic the natural remodeling process. In this study we review the development of a simple material remodeling rule which yields a stable structure which is optimal and which allows a unique solution. We then use this algorithm to assess the effect of prosthesis stiffness and the presence of a compliant layer on bone remodeling around these implants. An axisymmetric model for axial loading is used to model changes in bone density through the thickness of the cancellous bone around the implants. With cortical remodeling left out of the simulation, the simulations showed density distributions that agreed in general with the results in the literature, and showed a marked difference in response if a compliant layer was added to the prosthesis.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)27-40
Number of pages14
JournalJournal of Computer-Aided Materials Design
Issue number1
StatePublished - Oct 1 1993
Externally publishedYes


  • Bone remodeling
  • Orthopedic implants
  • Structural adaptation
  • Total hip replacements

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Materials Science(all)
  • Computer Science Applications
  • Computational Theory and Mathematics


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