Joint Arthroplasty: Implant Retrieval & Failure Analysis

The goal of implant retrieval analysis is to provide information to the orthopaedic community that unravels the story that every revised implant has to tell about its performance in the human body. We use a variety of techniques: histopathology of periprosthetic tissues, gross and microscopic examination of fixation interfaces and evaluation of wear and damage to the implant surfaces.

Current Research

The JVL Implant Retrieval Lab actively collaborates with multiple surgeons and institutions nationally and internationally. The Lab offers many interesting opportunities for student involvement at various levels of training and study.

In conjunction with clinical information and imaging studies, retrieval observations and measurements advance understanding of important factors affecting fixation, stability and wear performance in the patient.

The JVL Implant Retrieval Lab has an extensive archive of retrieved joint replacements and associated tissues spanning four decades, covering several generations of evolving implant designs and concepts.



  1. Nasser S, Campbell P, Kilgus DJ, Kossovsky N, Amstutz HC: Cementless total joint arthroplasty prostheses with titanium alloy articular surfaces: A human retrieval analysis. Hip Society John Charnley Award Paper,  Clin Orthop Rel Res 261:171-185, 1990
  2. McKellop H, Campbell P, Park SH, Schmalzried T, Grigoris P, Amstutz HC, Sarmiento A: The origin of submicron wear particles in total hip arthroplasties. John Charnley Award Paper. Proceedings of the Hip Society, Clin Orthop Rel Res 311:3-20, 1995
  3. Campbell P, Beaulé PE, Ebramzadeh E, LeDuff M, De Smet K, Lu Z, Amstutz HC: A study of implant failure in metal-on-metal surface arthroplasties. Hip Society John Charnley Award Paper, Clin Othop Rel Res, 453:35-46, 2006
  4. Ebramzadeh, E.; Campbell, PA.; Takamura, KM.; Lu, Z.; Sangiorgio, S. N.; Kalma, J. J.; De Smet, K. A.; and Amstutz, H. C.: Failure Modes of 433 metal-on-metal hip implants:  How, why, and wear. Orthopaedic Clinics North America. 42-2: 241-250, 2011.
  5. Van Der Straeten, C., Grammatopoulos, G., Gill, H. S., Calistri, A., Campbell, P. and De Smet, K. A.  “The 2012 Otto Aufranc award: The interpretation of metal ion levels in unilateral and bilateral hip resurfacing.” Clin Orthop Relat Res 471(2): 377-85. 2012
  6. Campbell P, Su A, Kung M, Jacobs J: Do retrieval analysis and blood metal measurements contribute to our understanding of ALTR ? Clin Orthop Rel Res,;472(12):3718-27, 2014