For Professionals


We use our bespoke, peer-reviewed and published methodology to analyse explants using the latest cutting-edge technologies

Single explant requiring urgent analysis

We can provide you with an easy to use retrieval pack. We can analyse and report to you within 24 hours of receipt of the explant if you require this.

Routine explant analysis

For large revision units, we can provide cost effective packs for multiple explant retrieval.

Explant analysis as part of the NRR

For surgeons and hospitals wishing to participate in the NRR project, we can provide cost free explant analysis.

Hip, knee and ankle arthroplasties

As standard, reports provide volumetric wear calculations and mapping of material loss. We provide other focused analysis if necessary – such as imaging of fixation surfaces – or as specifically requested.

Bearing surface analysis

Bearing surfaces are scanned using advanced coordinate measuring machines (CMMs). We have two CMMs in house, a Strato Apex 574 and a Legex 322, both from Mitutoyo. The CMMs have measurement accuracies of less than one micron (one thousandth of a millimetre). CMMs use a ruby probe to glide over the surfaces of components being analysed, continuously collecting data points.

Automated programmes allow the CMM to distinguish between the unworn parts of the bearing surfaces and determine the geometry of the parts when they left the factory. From this unworn area, the original geometry of the component can be reverse engineered. By comparing the actual surface (the post revision geometry) of a component to the original (as manufactured) surface, the magnitude of wear can be calculated and mapped. CMMs are capable of scanning most surfaces, including the more complicated geometries such as knee and ankle replacements. The accuracy of wear analysis is limited however by the ease with which the original geometry can be reverse engineered.

Taper junction analysis

The head/stem taper connection is of real concern in contemporary hip arthroplasty. Material shed from this interface appears to be particularly potent in provoking adverse tissue reactions in the host.
Similar to the bearing surfaces, we use a CMM to scan over the taper surfaces and identify the unworn regions of the components. From this unworn surface, the original, as manufactured geometry of the taper can be reverse engineered. This idealised geometry is then compared to the actual position of the material following explantation, allowing the amount of material loss to be estimated and plotted using bespoke software.

High resolution light microscopy

ExplantLab has a Mitutoyo MF-A1010D light microscope capable of producing high resolution images at up to x1000 magnification. It has measurement accuracy that is the highest in its class, conforming to JIS B 7153. It can work in conjunction with iWorks software to convert captured data into three dimensional image reconstructions.

Read 'Adverse reactions to metal debris: Histopathological features of periprosthetic soft tissue reactions seen in association with failed metal on metal hip arthroplasties'

Analysis of component position

ExplantLab has an unparalleled database of measurements of three dimensional acetabular component orientation in hip replacement surgery. These results have been published in several high impact, peer reviewed articles. When provided with x-rays, we can give an indication of the relative position the surgeon placed a component and whether that was a factor in the performance of the prosthesis.

Read 'Adverse reaction to metal debris following hip resurfacing: The influence of component type, orientation and volumetric wear'Read 'Cup Anteversion in Hip Resurfacing: Validation of EBRA and the Presentation of a Simple Clinical Grading System'
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