Strategies in Trauma and Limb Reconstruction

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2020 | September-December | Volume 15 | Issue 3

Original Article

Siddhartha Sinha, Rajiv Maharjan, Guru P Khanal, Bishnu Pokharel, Nikhil Drolia, Sumit Gupta, Rajesh K Kanojia, Pashupati Chaudhary

Comparison of Functional and Radiological Outcomes of Olecranon Fractures Treated with Tension Band Wiring with Kirschner Wires to Transcortical Screw Fixation—A Randomised Controlled Study

[Year:2020] [Month:September-December] [Volume:15] [Number:3] [Pages:7] [Pages No:131 - 137]

Keywords: Elbow, Fracture fixation, Olecranon fracture, Randomised controlled trial,Bone screws

PDF  |  DOI: 10.5005/jp-journals-10080-1510  |  Open Access |  How to cite  | 


Aim: To compare the clinical and radiological outcomes of fixation of olecranon fractures by a transcortical screw with conventional tension band wiring (TBW) using a Kirschner wire (K-wire). Material and methods: This is a non-blinded randomised controlled trial comprising two groups (n = 30 each) with Mayo type A olecranon fractures fixed with either TBW or transcortical cancellous screws (CCS). Outcomes included the Mayo elbow performance index (MEPI), time to union, range of motion (ROM), and rates of complication among these two groups. Results: Most of the patients showed excellent scoring as per MEPI in both the groups at 6 weeks (90% in TBW group and 76.7% in CCS group) and were not significant (p = 0.719). Signs of the radiological union were noted in 80% of the cases at 6 weeks and complete at 6 months. Hardware-related complications (8.3% symptomatic hardware and 6.7% implant back-out), infection, and mean ROM were similar between the two groups (elbow flexion was 142.33 ± 24.67° in TBW group and 143.1 ± 10.19° in transcortical screw group, p = 0.246) at the end of the study. Conclusion: There were no statistically significant differences in the clinical–radiological outcomes and complications fixing the non-comminuted olecranon fractures with either transcortical screw or TBW. Clinical significance: Transcortical screw fixation is an acceptable alternative to TBW for non-comminuted olecranon fractures in terms of union and functional outcome.

Original Article

Gracielle S Cardoso, Renato Amorim, Francisco M Penha, Françoá J Horn, Carlos RM Roesler, Jefferson LB Marques

Biomechanical Analysis of the Behaviour at the Metaphyseal–Diaphyseal Junction of Complex Tibial Plateau Fractures Using Two Circular Fixator Configurations

[Year:2020] [Month:September-December] [Volume:15] [Number:3] [Pages:8] [Pages No:138 - 145]

Keywords: Axial movement, Circular external fixation, Metaphyseal–diaphyseal dissociation

PDF  |  DOI: 10.5005/jp-journals-10080-1507  |  Open Access |  How to cite  | 


Background: High-energy tibial plateau fractures are challenges in treatment with controversy over operative stabilisation, especially for fractures with metaphyseal–diaphyseal dissociation. Treatment with percutaneous or minimally invasive direct reduction techniques, usually associated with circular external fixation, has generated interest although there is no consensus regarding the type of external fixation to be used. Aim: This study aims to compare the two hybrid circular external fixation mountings used to treat the high-energy tibial plateau fractures. Methods: Two different groups of hybrid circular external fixation frame mountings were assembled using composite tibiae with proximal metaphyseal osteotomies simulating tibial plateau fractures with metaphyseal–diaphyseal dissociation. The standard all-wire frame mounting was assembled, and the comparison frame mounting had the distal K-wires replaced with half-pins. Both groups were tested through cyclic loading between 300 and 1000 N for 10,000 cycles. Interfragmentary linear and rotational displacements were analysed. Results: The standard frame mounting behaved similarly to a classic Ilizarov frame, allowing greater axial movement (mean, 3.76 ± 0.26 mm in the standard group and 3.02 ± 0.23 mm in the test group) and smaller mediolateral displacement compared with the test frame (mean, 0.17 ± 0.16 mm compared to 0.56 ± 0.12 mm). The test frame behaved more similarly to a linear external fixator and provided greater axial stability, similar anteroposterior displacement, and lower mediolateral stability. Despite these differences, in both groups the axial displacement was greater than the prejudicial nonaxial movements. Conclusion: Increasing the number of half-pins and decreasing the number of K-wires in hybrid circular external fixation generate frames that tend to behave more similarly to the linear external fixators.

Original Article

Alexios D Iliadis, Roland Bebja, Katherine Wang, Mehran Moazen, Jonathan Wright, Peter Calder, David Goodier

Reducing the Risk of Ring Breakage in Taylor Spatial Frames: The Effect of Frame Configuration on Strain at the Half-ring Junction

[Year:2020] [Month:September-December] [Volume:15] [Number:3] [Pages:5] [Pages No:146 - 150]

Keywords: Complication, Deformity correction, Taylor spatial frame,Circular external fixator

PDF  |  DOI: 10.5005/jp-journals-10080-1508  |  Open Access |  How to cite  | 


Aim: We have encountered four cases with Taylor spatial frames (TSF) (Smith & Nephew, Memphis, TN, USA) with breakage at the half-ring junction of the distal ring. This study examines the strain produced on different locations of the distal ring during loading and the effects on the strain of altering the frame construct. Materials and methods: We mounted two ring TSF constructs on tibia saw bone models. The proximal ring was the same in all constructs and consisted of a 2/3 180 mm ring attached with three wires. Construct 1 is reproducing the configuration of cases where failure was seen. The distal 155 mm ring is attached with three half pins. The half-ring junction is located in the midline. Construct 2 has a different half pin placement and an additional wire on the distal ring. Constructs 3 and 4 have the same half pin configuration to construct 1 but the distal ring is rotated 60° internally and externally, respectively. Strain gauges were attached to different locations and measurements recorded during loading. Statistical analysis was performed. Results: Highest strain values were recorded at the half-ring junction of constructs 1 and 2 (>600 microstrains (με) in tension). Rotating the ring 60° internally significantly reduces the strain at the half-ring junction (<300 με) whilst external rotation by 60° further reduces the strain (<180 με). Ring strain is higher in areas close to half pin attachments. Conclusions: The highest strain is in the half-ring junction as the half rings are subjected to different loading modes. The thickness of the half-ring is halved and the second moment of area reduced further increasing breakage risk. Placing this junction close to the half pin–frame interface, as dictated by the anatomical safe zone further increases the strain. Rotating the distal ring 60° significantly reduces the strain at the half-ring junction. Clinical significance: Ring breakage is a rare but significant complication. This is the first study to address this potential mode of TSF failure. Insights and technical tips from this study can help reduce this.

Original Article

Alexios D Iliadis, Anna Timms, Sharron Fugazzotto, Penina Edel, Simon Britten, Jonathan Wright, David Goodier, Peter Calder

Thromboprophylaxis in Intramedullary Limb Lengthening Surgery

[Year:2020] [Month:September-December] [Volume:15] [Number:3] [Pages:6] [Pages No:151 - 156]

Keywords: PRECICE,Complication, Cosmetic limb lengthening, Internal lengthening nail, Intramedullary lengthening, Limb lengthening

PDF  |  DOI: 10.5005/jp-journals-10080-1505  |  Open Access |  How to cite  | 


Aim: The use of intramedullary lengthening devices is becoming increasingly popular. There are limited data regarding the incidence of venous thromboembolism following intramedullary lengthening surgery and no reports or guidance for current practice on use of thromboprophylaxis. Following a case of post-operative deep vein thrombosis in our institution, we felt that it is important to assess best practice. We conducted a national survey to collect data that would describe current practice and help develop consensus for treatment. Materials and methods: We identified surgeons across the UK that perform adult intramedullary limb lengthening through the British Limb Reconstruction Society membership and a Precise Users database. Surgeons were contacted and asked to respond to an online survey. Responses to thromboprophylaxis regimes employed in their practice and cases of venous thromboembolism were collated. Results: 24 out of 54 surgeons identified responded with a total of 454 cases of adult intramedullary lengthening (352 femoral and 102 tibial nails) performed over a five year period (January 2015–January 2020). Only one case of deep venous thrombosis (DVT) following femoral lengthening was reported. There is wide variability in practice both in terms of thromboprophylaxis risk assessment, choice of medications and duration of treatment. The vast majority of surgeons (85%) felt that there was insufficient evidence available to guide their practice. Conclusions: Intramedullary lengthening is a surgical treatment growing in popularity. There are limited data available to guide decision-making regarding aspects of treatment such as thromboprophylaxis. This is reflected in the wide variation in practice reported in this study. There are both a need and a desire to gather data that will allow us to come to a consensus and to guide safe practice. Clinical significance: Venous thromboembolism is a potential complication of lower limb lengthening surgery. We report on national incidence and current practices of thromboprophylaxis to allow for informed decision-making and help develop consensus for best practice.

Original Article

Amgad M Haleem, Sherif Galal, Ogonna K Nwawka, Angela Balagadde, Eugene W Borst, Huong T Do, Douglas N Mintz, Austin T Fragomen, S Robert Rozbruch

Short-term Results of Magnetic Resonance Imaging after Ankle Distraction Arthroplasty

[Year:2020] [Month:September-December] [Volume:15] [Number:3] [Pages:6] [Pages No:157 - 162]

Keywords: Ankle distraction, Clinical results, Magnetic resonance imaging

PDF  |  DOI: 10.5005/jp-journals-10080-1512  |  Open Access |  How to cite  | 


Background: Ankle distraction arthroplasty has emerged as an alternative treatment for ankle arthritis. There are few reports on the magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) findings after distraction arthroplasty. This study sought to determine whether there are positive changes on MRI after ankle distraction and improvements on X-ray. Additionally, patient-reported outcomes and joint range of motion (ROM) after ankle distraction are described. Materials and methods: Thirty-two patients (mean age 49 years) who underwent ankle distraction had pre-operative and one-year postoperative MRIs, which were graded using a modified whole-organ magnetic resonance imaging score (WORMS). Ankle joint space and ROM were measured. A non-validated three-item questionnaire was administered to assess functional outcomes. Results: Although the anterior quadrant of the ankle showed a trend to improvement in cartilage morphology on the postoperative MRI, the WORMS did not demonstrate a significant difference in any of its subcategories. While reduction in joint osteophytes was observed and maintained short term, this was mainly due to resection intraoperatively. X-rays revealed a significant increase in joint space, and there was a significant increase in ankle dorsiflexion. Eight-seven percent of the patients were satisfied with their functional outcome. Conclusion: At short-term follow-up, MRI scores after ankle distraction arthroplasty did not demonstrate significant improvement despite positive changes on X-ray and improved clinical outcomes and ankle ROM. Further study on larger patient numbers with longer follow-up is required. Level of evidence: IV, Case Series


Richard C Lee, Mark Aulisio, Raymond W Liu

Exploring the Ethics of Stature Lengthening as Treatment for Height Dysphoria

[Year:2020] [Month:September-December] [Volume:15] [Number:3] [Pages:6] [Pages No:163 - 168]

Keywords: Treatment,Enhancement, Ethics, Height dysphoria, Stature lengthening

PDF  |  DOI: 10.5005/jp-journals-10080-1502  |  Open Access |  How to cite  | 


Aim: To promote a discussion on the ethics and justifications of stature lengthening in patients without skeletal deformity. Background: Stature lengthening for height gain in patients without skeletal deformity has stirred controversy within the orthopedic community. However, current literature does not delineate the ethical issues surrounding this procedure. Improvements in the techniques, technology, and safety profile of stature lengthening warrant an ethical discussion to challenge, justify, and guide the use of this surgical procedure. Review results: Examination of ethical issues leads to the distinction between the dual roles of stature lengthening as a treatment vs an enhancement. The primary focus on stature lengthening as treatment allows for exploration of “height dysphoria”—a psychological burden caused by a dissatisfaction with one\'s height—as the primary pathology that may justify surgical intervention. Conclusion: In our opinion, additional work is required to establish “height dysphoria” as a true pathology in order to ethically justify stature lengthening as a legitimate form of treatment. Further discussion is needed to address the ethics of stature lengthening as an enhancement. Clinical significance: This paper addresses salient ethical issues of stature lengthening in patients without skeletal deformity by exploring historical, contemporary, and comparative contexts.


Ahmed A-H Abood, Juozas Petruskevicius, Björn Vogt, Adrien Frommer, Robert Rödl, Jan Duedal Rölfing

The Joint Angle Tool for Intraoperative Assessment of Coronal Alignment of the Lower Limb

[Year:2020] [Month:September-December] [Volume:15] [Number:3] [Pages:5] [Pages No:169 - 173]

Keywords: MAD,Anatomic axis, Mechanical axis, Bone transport, NuVasive, Deformity correction, Orthopaedic reconstruction, Distal femoral osteotomy, Osteotomy, Fitbone, Technique, High tibial osteotomy, Limb lengthening

PDF  |  DOI: 10.5005/jp-journals-10080-1511  |  Open Access |  How to cite  | 


Aim: Presentation of the joint angle tool (JAT), a low-cost goniometer for intraoperative assessment of the lower limb alignment. Background: Intraoperative assessment of coronal alignment is important when performing corrective osteotomies around the knee and ankle, limb lengthening, and trauma surgery. JAT provides surgeons with information about the anatomic and mechanical axes intraoperatively based on true anteroposterior radiographs. Technique: JAT consists of pre-printed joint orientation angles of the anatomic and mechanical axis including normal variations on a plastic sheet. It is placed on the screen of the image intensifier after obtaining a true anteroposterior image. The pre-printed joint orientation angles can assist the surgeons intraoperatively in achieving the pre-planned axis correction. Here, its feasibility is demonstrated in four cases. Conclusion and clinical significance: JAT is a modified goniometer that allows intraoperative assessment of the mechanical and anatomic axis. JAT is applicable throughout the entire surgical procedure irrespective of the method of internal fixation and may provide additional reassurance of correct alignment. JAT consists of a plastic sheet with printed joint orientation angles and their normal variation. JAT is freely available from for use and modification according to the Creative Commons license (CC BY-SA 4.0) if this paper is attributed.


Huang S Lee, Rohaman Tasarib, Fahrudin C Hamzah, Ashraf HA Halim

A Novel Technique—Bone Splitting and Bone Grafting in an Hourglass-shaped Bone Following Distraction Osteogenesis

[Year:2020] [Month:September-December] [Volume:15] [Number:3] [Pages:4] [Pages No:175 - 178]

Keywords: Hypoplastic, Ilizarov,Distraction osteogenesis, Hourglass

PDF  |  DOI: 10.5005/jp-journals-10080-1509  |  Open Access |  How to cite  | 


Aim: We describe a novel technique of bone splitting and bone grafting in managing hypoplastic or hourglass-shaped regenerated bone in distraction osteogenesis. Background: Hourglass-shaped regenerated bone is a potential complication during distraction osteogenesis which is vulnerable to fracture when loaded. Our novel technique overcomes this by increasing the diameter of new bone formation via bone splitting and bone grafting. Case description: We report three cases with hypoplastic regenerated bone following distraction osteogenesis. It was treated with bone splitting and bone grafting. Although one case was complicated with an iatrogenic transverse fracture during the surgery, all three cases achieved the goal of increasing bone diameter during the subsequent consolidation phase. Conclusion: This relatively simple and novel surgical intervention can overcome the hourglass-shaped appearance, thus preventing potential fracture. Clinical significance: We emphasise the importance of identifying hypoplastic regenerate bone before the consolidation phase of distraction osteogenesis. The novel technique described is a simple surgical intervention which can prevent potential fracture through the newly formed bone.


Yoshinobu Oka, Wook-Cheol Kim, Takashi Yoshida, Masashi Nakase, Yoshihiro Kotoura, Atsushi Nishida, Hiroaki Wada, Toshiharu Shirai, Kenji Takahashi

Hybrid Fixation for Paediatric Femoral Supracondylar Fracture during Circular External Fixation of the Lower Limb

[Year:2020] [Month:September-December] [Volume:15] [Number:3] [Pages:5] [Pages No:179 - 183]

Keywords: Children, Circular external fixation, Femur fracture

PDF  |  DOI: 10.5005/jp-journals-10080-1454  |  Open Access |  How to cite  | 


Aim: To describe the novel hybrid fixation technique for paediatric femoral supracondylar fracture during circular external fixation of the lower limb. Background: The Ilizarov external fixator is commonly used for various orthopaedic conditions. Difficulties associated with external fixation have previously been described. A fall while using a circular external fixator can cause ipsilateral fracture. Such fractures are ideally treated conservatively, but it is difficult to fix the frame itself. No study has reported the treatment of paediatric femoral supracondylar fracture during circular external fixation. Herein, we describe a novel hybrid fixation technique that was successfully used to treat paediatric femoral supracondylar fracture in three paediatric patients with circular external fixators. Technique: The fracture was manually manipulated and reduced by slight hyperextension of the lower extremity under general anaesthesia. After confirmation of good reduction, a stockinette, a cast padding, and a thin core cast were applied to the ipsilateral thigh. The hinge parts were attached to the medial and lateral sides of the proximal ring. The rods were connected to the medial and lateral hinges, and the half ring was connected to the ventral side of the proximal end. Under fluoroscopic confirmation, the thin core cast of the thigh and rods were connected by cast rolled in a figure-of-eight manner. The hinges were locked with the knee joint slightly flexed. Conclusion: The minimally invasive hybrid fixation technique enables conservative treatment of paediatric femoral supracondylar fracture during circular external fixation of the lower limb with no complications, and early exercise and recovery. Clinical significance: This novel hybrid fixation technique will be an effective method for paediatric femoral supracondylar fracture in patients with a circular external fixator.


Jannik Frings, Fabian Freudenthaler, Matthias Krause, Karl-Heinz Frosch

Closed-wedge Patelloplasty for the Treatment of Distal Patellofemoral Maltracking and Instability due to Severe Patellar Dysplasia: Case Report and Surgical Technique

[Year:2020] [Month:September-December] [Volume:15] [Number:3] [Pages:9] [Pages No:184 - 192]

Keywords: Osteotomy, Patella, Patelloplasty,Distal maltracking, Instability, Maltracking

PDF  |  DOI: 10.5005/jp-journals-10080-1501  |  Open Access |  How to cite  | 


Background: Patellofemoral maltracking is caused by different anatomical factors. Most of them are associated with a proximal maltracking, which alters the patella\'s engagement into the trochlear groove and predisposes the patellofemoral joint for instability. Different surgical techniques have been described to realign patellar tracking, however, most of which address proximal patellar maltracking. Aim: The aim of this article is to demonstrate the influence of patella-related deformities on patellar tracking and to present a novel surgical technique for the treatment of distal patellar maltracking, caused by a severe patellar dyplasia. Case Description: We report the case of a 23-year-old patient with a severe patellar dysplasia, presenting a distal patellar maltracking with recurring dislocations in deep flexion. Due to her instability, the patient was immobilised and dependent on the constant use of walking aids. Radiological images showed a concavely shaped patellar, which articulated exclusively with the lateral epicondyle and caused the patella to dislocate laterally, starting at a flexion angle of 60°. An anterior closing-wedge osteotomy was used to reshape and recenter the patella, which was complemented by a medial patellofemoral ligament reconstruction. At the 18-month follow-up, the patient presented pain free and fully remobilised, without the use of walking aids. Patellar tracking was reestablished, with a possible knee flexion until 140°. No redislocation of the patella had occurred. Conclusion: Distal patellofemoral maltracking, caused by a severe patellar dysplasia, can successfully be treated with an anterior closed-wedge osteotomy of the patella. In combination with a medial patellofemoral ligament reconstruction, patellofemoral stability can be reestablished, to prevent further dislocations. Clinical Significance: There are multiple factors, which may cause patellar maltracking. A thorough clinical and radiological preoperative analysis is mandatory, in order to clearly identify the underlying pathologies, as these may affect patellar tracking proximally or distally.

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