Hip implant design with three-dimensional porous architecture of optimized graded density

Even in a well-functioning total hip replacement, significant peri-implant bone resorption can occur secondary to stress shielding. Stress shielding is caused by an undesired mismatch of elastic modulus between the stiffer implant and the adjacent bone tissue. To address this problem, we present here a microarchitected hip implant that consists of a three-dimensional graded lattice material with properties that are mechanically biocompatible with those of the femoral bone. Asymptotic homogenization is used to numerically determine the mechanical and fatigue properties of the implant, and a non-gradient scheme of topology optimization is used to find the optimized relative density distribution of the porous implant under multiple constraints dictated by implant micromotion, pore size, porosity, and minimum manufacturable thickness of the cell elements. Obtained for a 38-year-old patient femur, bone resorption is assessed for postoperative conditions. The numerical results suggest that bone loss for the optimized implant is only 42% of that of a fully solid implant, here taken as benchmark, and 79% of that of a porous implant with uniform density. The architected hip implant presented in this work shows clinical promise in reducing bone loss while preventing implant micromotion, thereby contributing to reduce the risk of periprosthetic fracture and the probability of revision surgery.