Three main reasons, according to Smith-Petersen,1 have been responsible for limited success in arthroplasty of the hip joint: surgical approaches were traumatic and inadequate; the joint created was defective because of lack of proper instruments, and the underlying principle of interposing a perishable barrier between imperfectly shaped joint surfaces was not sound. The supra-articular, subperiosteal approach to the hip developed by Smith-Petersen improved the exposure of the head and neck of the femur, and the excision of the anterior superior wall of the acetabulum permitted access to the other side of the joint. A fortuitous circumstance suggested to the author the idea of the mold. In 1923 a piece of glass which had been embedded for a year was removed from a patient's back. The glass was surrounded by a minimal amount of fibrous tissue, lined by a glistening synovial sac that contained a few drops of clear yellow
EVOLUTION OF MOLD ARTHROPLASTY OF THE HIP JOINT. JAMA. 1948;137(3):244–245. doi:10.1001/jama.1948.02890370026010
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