Strategies in Trauma and Limb Reconstruction

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VOLUME 15 , ISSUE 1 ( January-April, 2020 ) > List of Articles

Original Article

Taylor Spatial Frame in Treatment of Equinus Deformity

Sherif Dabash, Eric Potter, Gregory Catlett, William McGarvey

Citation Information : Dabash S, Potter E, Catlett G, McGarvey W. Taylor Spatial Frame in Treatment of Equinus Deformity. 2020; 15 (1):28-33.

DOI: 10.5005/jp-journals-10080-1452

License: CC BY-NC-SA 4.0

Published Online: 27-01-2021

Copyright Statement:  Copyright © 2020; The Author(s).


Background: An equinus deformity interferes with activities of daily living. Correction of the deformity ranges from conservative (heel cord stretching, orthotics) to surgical treatment (Baumann, Strayer, Achilles lengthening, soft tissue releases). Severe contractures increase surgical intervention with extensive dissections to release soft tissues. This study investigated the clinical outcomes of gradual overcorrection using a Taylor spatial frame (TSF) with tendo-Achilles lengthening (TAL) added as necessary. Materials and methods: This retrospective chart review evaluated patients with significant equinus treated with a TSF at a single large tertiary referral centre. Data collected included: diagnosis; patient demographics; laterality; time in frame; additional procedures; complications; degree of equinus deformity preoperatively and at every follow-up visit. Patients were followed at 1 week, 3 weeks, 6 weeks, 3 months, and 6 months intervals, and yearly thereafter. Results: Twenty-four patients (26 procedures) were treated with a TSF for equinus and had complete preoperative and follow-up measurements over 2 years. The angle of deformity increased from a preoperative −21.5 (range, −69.0 to −1.0) degrees to a postoperative 4.9 (range, −17.0 to 17.0) degrees (z = −4.4573, p = 0.0001, N = 26, Wilcoxon signed-rank test). A secondary outcome was a weak association (not statistically significant) between time in the TSF and the postoperative deformity angle. Four complications occurred during the follow-up (two pin site infections, one broken pin, and one plantar abscess). Three patients had recurrence of equinus deformity at time of last follow-up. Conclusion: Using a TSF for correcting severe, fixed equinus contractures of the ankle joint is successful with minimal soft tissue-related complications. Overcorrection should be achieved in order to compensate for the loss of some dorsiflexion after frame removal. No added benefit was observed from having the frame on for a long time after correcting the deformity. Adding TAL is not necessary in all cases and required only in severe deformities of more than 25°.

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