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This article is the author’s final published version in EFORT Open Reviews, Volume 4, Issue 12, January 2020, Pages 647-658.

The published version is available at Copyright © Atilla et al.


Osteonecrosis of the femoral head is a poorly understood condition that may lead to progressive destruction of the hip joint. Its incidence is common between the third and fifth decades of life and it is the diagnosis behind 5-18% of annually performed total hip arthroplasties (THAs) in the USA.Regarding the high rate of complications of THA in that age group, authors have agreed on the importance of joint-preservation techniques for this disease but techniques vary to establish a generally accepted algorithmic approach.Surgical head-preserving procedures, core decompression with or without graft, stem cell augmentation, or biologic adjuncts, vascularized bone grafting, and proximal femoral osteotomies have all been published on with heterogeneous results and with limited evidence to date.Consensus states that the prognosis of patients with osteonecrosis of the femoral head can be significantly improved with early diagnosis and timely intervention.

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