Recent studies indicate a decreased risk of periprosthetic femoral fractures (PFFs) in cementless total hip arthroplasty (THA) for short compared to straight stems. However, the results are still inconclusive. Therefore, we retrospectively investigated the rate of PFFs within the first year between cementless short and straight stem THA.

A 1:1 propensity score matching of 3,053 THAs was performed. Two groups including 1,147 short stem THAs implanted through a minimally invasive antero-lateral approach and 1,147 straight stem THAs implanted through a transgluteal Hardinge approach were matched. The rates of PFFs and fracture patterns were compared between both stem types. Risk factors for PFFs were analyzed by multivariate regression analyses.

The overall rate of PFFs was 1.7% in short stem THA and 3.2% in straight stem THA (P = .015). Postoperatively detected Vancouver A fractures occurred significantly more often in straight stem THA (P = .002), while the occurrence Vancouver B fractures did not differ significantly (P = .563). The risk of PFFs was significantly increased for women in straight stem THA (Odds ratio (OR) 2.620; Confidence Interval (CI) 1.172-5.856; P = .019). Increasing age showed a significantly increased odds ratio in short stem (OR 1.103; CI 1.041-1.169, P < .001) and straight stem THA (OR 1.057; CI 1.014-1.101, P = .008).

Short stem THA reduces Vancouver Type A PFFs in the trochanteric region compared to straight stem THA, while Vancouver Type B fractures are comparable. Increasing age is a significant risk factor for both stem types, while the risk for PFFs in women was only significantly increased in the straight stem group.