In the 1990s, polyethylene was widely regarded as the "villain"
in total joint arthroplasty, largely due to its prominent role in aseptic
loosening and periprosthetic osteolysis, the most common causes for implant
failure. In this book, Dr. Steven Kurtz reminds us that ultra-high molecular
weight polyethylene (UHMWPE) is truly a remarkable material, the use of which
in total joint arthroplasty has revolutionized the treatment of end-stage
joint disease. In fact, polyethylene currently dominates the market for
bearing surfaces in hip arthroplasty and is universally used in total knee
arthroplasty. This is likely to be the case for the foreseeable future.