Background: This survey aims to assess the satisfaction of patients who have had treatment using external fixation (EF).
Materials and methods: An original questionnaire and a Short Form 36 (SF-36) were distributed to 121 patients who underwent treatment using EF for deformity correction and lengthening between 2006 and 2016. A multivariate analysis was performed on the factors associated with satisfaction.
Results: Sixty patients returned a response. The average satisfaction score was 83.6 points. In the 5-point satisfaction survey, 43 of 60 patients (71.7%) responded “very satisfied” or “satisfied” and 27 patients (45.0%) responded “yes” to the question as to whether they would request EF treatment again if presenting with the original preoperative condition. In addition, the subjectively expressed tolerance for having an external fixator device on the limb was 92.1 days on average. A correlation was established with the ISOLS score.
Conclusion: The top three factors that determined subjective inconvenience with EF are pain, walking, and heaviness. Although EF treatment was stressful, the satisfaction scores were high. Furthermore, the satisfaction with EF treatment was improved by (1) pain control, (2) shortening the EF period, and (3) psychological support.
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