Strategies in Trauma and Limb Reconstruction

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VOLUME 10 , ISSUE 3 ( November, 2015 ) > List of Articles

Original Article

Predicting translational deformity following opening-wedge osteotomy for lower limb realignment

Richard C. Barksfield, Fergal P. Monsell

Keywords : Opening-wedge osteotomy, Deformity analysis, Osteotomy rules, Translational deformity, Limb realignment, Obligatory translation

Citation Information : Barksfield RC, Monsell FP. Predicting translational deformity following opening-wedge osteotomy for lower limb realignment. 2015; 10 (3):167-173.

DOI: 10.1007/s11751-015-0232-4

License: CC BY-NC-SA 4.0

Published Online: 01-12-2013

Copyright Statement:  Copyright © 2015; The Author(s).


An opening-wedge osteotomy is well recognised for the management of limb deformity and requires an understanding of the principles of geometry. Translation at the osteotomy is needed when the osteotomy is performed away from the centre of rotation of angulation (CORA), but the amount of translation varies with the distance from the CORA. This translation enables proximal and distal axes on either side of the proposed osteotomy to realign. We have developed two experimental models to establish whether the amount of translation required (based on the translation deformity created) can be predicted based upon simple trigonometry. A predictive algorithm was derived where translational deformity was predicted as 2(tan α × d), where α represents 50 % of the desired angular correction, and d is the distance of the desired osteotomy site from the CORA. A simulated model was developed using TraumaCad online digital software suite (Brainlab AG, Germany). Osteotomies were simulated in the distal femur, proximal tibia and distal tibia for nine sets of lower limb scanograms at incremental distances from the CORA and the resulting translational deformity recorded. There was strong correlation between the distance of the osteotomy from the CORA and simulated translation deformity for distal femoral deformities (correlation coefficient 0.99, p < 0.0001), proximal tibial deformities (correlation coefficient 0.93–0.99, p < 0.0001) and distal tibial deformities (correlation coefficient 0.99, p < 0.0001). There was excellent agreement between the predictive algorithm and simulated translational deformity for all nine simulations (correlation coefficient 0.93–0.99, p < 0.0001). Translational deformity following corrective osteotomy for lower limb deformity can be anticipated and predicted based upon the angular correction and the distance between the planned osteotomy site and the CORA.

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