Heterotopic Ossification Formation in Military Beneficiaries Following Hip- and Pelvic-Level Amputations

Kaitlin S. Porter, Colin J. Harrington, Aline Babikian, David Heltzel, Benjamin K. Potter, Douglas G. Smith, Paul F. Pasquina

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Scopus citations


Introduction: Traumatic hip and pelvic level amputations are uncommon but devastating injuries and associated with numerous complications that can significantly affect quality of life for these patients. While heterotopic ossification (HO) formation has been reported at rates of up to 90% following traumatic, combat-related amputations, previous studies included few patients with more proximal hip and pelvic level amputations. Materials and Methods: We conducted a retrospective review of the Military Health System medical record and identified patients with both traumatic and disease-related hip- and pelvic-level amputations performed between 2001 and 2017. We reviewed the most recent pelvis radiograph at least 3 months following amputation to determine bony resection level and the association between HO formation and reason for amputation (trauma versus disease related). Results: Of 93 patients with post-amputation pelvis radiographs available, 66% (n = 61) had hip-level amputations and 34% (n = 32) had a hemipelvectomy. The median duration from the initial injury or surgery to the most recent radiograph was 393 days (interquartile range, 73–1,094). HO occurred in 75% of patients. Amputation secondary to trauma was a significant predictor of HO formation (χ2 = 24.58; P < .0001); however, there was no apparent relationship between the severity of HO and traumatic versus non-traumatic etiology (χ2 = 2.92; P = .09). Conclusions: Amputations at the hip were more common than pelvic-level amputations in this study population, and three-fourths of hip- and pelvic-level amputation patients had radiographic evidence of HO. The rate of HO formation following blast injuries and other trauma was significantly higher compared with patients with non-traumatic amputations.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)E3477-E3481
JournalMilitary Medicine
Issue number11-12
StatePublished - 1 Nov 2023
Externally publishedYes


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