Contemporary 2-Stage Treatment of Periprosthetic Hip Infection with Evidence-Based Standardized Protocols Yields Excellent Results: Caveats and Recommendations

Emily M. Wichern, Matthew R. Zielinski, Mary Ziemba-Davis, R. Michael Meneghini

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


Background: This study quantified the effectiveness of contemporary and evidence-based standardized 2-stage treatment for periprosthetic hip infection. Findings illustrate potential limitations of criticisms of 2-stage protocols and potential consequences of adopting single-stage protocols before definitive data are available. Methods: Fifty-four consecutive hips treated with 2-stage resection and reimplantation were retrospectively reviewed. Standardized protocols were adhered to including implant resection, meticulous surgical debridement, antibiotic spacer, 6-week intravenous antibiotics, a 2-week drug holiday, and laboratory assessment of infection eradication before reimplantation. After reimplantation, patients were placed on prophylactic intravenous antibiotics until discharge and discharged on oral antibiotics for a minimum of 7 days until intraoperative cultures were final. Successful treatment was defined per Delphi-based International Multidisciplinary Consensus. Results: The overall treatment success rate was 95.7% (44 of 46 cases) with mean infection-free survivorship of 67.2 (range, 23.8-106.4) months. Success rates were 100% for early and acute hematogenous infections regardless of host type and 100% for chronic infections in uncompromised hosts. 95% (19/20) of chronic infections in compromised hosts and 83.3% (5/6) of chronic infections in significantly compromised hosts were successfully treated. About 4% of primary hips and 20% of revision hips required repeat debridement and spacer exchange after initial resection. No patients died because of treatment. Conclusion: Details from this consecutive series of patients undergoing 2-stage treatment for hip infection suggest that some criticisms of 2-stage treatment as well as some arguments in support of single-stage treatment may be overstated. Promotion and uncritical adoption of single-stage treatment protocols are discouraged until further and more definitive data exist.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)2983-2995
Number of pages13
JournalJournal of Arthroplasty
Issue number10
StateAccepted/In press - Jan 1 2020


  • 1-stage treatment
  • 2-stage treatment
  • hip infection
  • hip revision
  • periprosthetic joint infection
  • total hip arthroplasty

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Orthopedics and Sports Medicine

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