JAAOS

JAAOS, Volume 16, No. 12


Adverse events associated with anterior cervical spine surgery.

Anterior cervical procedures for neurologic decompression and fusion, including cervical diskectomy and cervical corpectomy, are commonly performed by orthopaedic surgeons and spinal neurosurgeons. These procedures are highly successful in treating most patients with persistent pain and neurologic symptoms that have not responded to nonsurgical methods. Adverse events occur infrequently, but several have been described, including esophageal injury, vertebral artery injury, dural tear, postoperative airway compromise, spinal cord injury, hematoma, dysphagia, dysphonia, and graft dislodgement. Newer procedures, such as cervical total disk replacement and the use of bone morphogenetic protein as a supplement to fusion, have raised unique concerns. Appropriate strategies must be utilized to avoid these adverse events, and the treating surgeon should have an understanding of how to detect and manage such events when they do arise.

    • Keywords:
    • Cervical Vertebrae|Decompression

    • Surgical|Humans|Intraoperative Complications|Neurodegenerative Diseases|Postoperative Complications|Risk Factors|Spinal Diseases|Spinal Fusion

    • Subspecialty:
    • Spine

    • Pain Management

Cold exposure injuries to the extremities.

Cold exposure injuries comprise nonfreezing injuries that include chilblain (aka pernio) and trench, or immersion, foot, as well as freezing injuries that affect core body tissues resulting in hypothermia of peripheral tissues, causing frostnip or frostbite. Frostbite, the most serious peripheral injury, results in tissue necrosis from direct cellular damage and indirect damage secondary to vasospasm and arterial thromboses. The risk of frostbite is influenced by host factors, particularly alcohol use and smoking, and environmental factors, including ambient temperature, duration of exposure, altitude, and wind speed. Rewarming for frostbite should not begin until definitive medical care can be provided to avoid repeated freeze-thaw cycles, as these cause additional tissue necrosis. Rewarming should be rapid and for an affected limb should be performed by submersion in warm water at 104 degrees to 107.6 degrees F (40 degrees to 42 degrees C) for 15 to 30 minutes. Débridement of necrotic tissues is generally delayed until there is a clear demarcation from viable tissues, a process that usually takes from 1 to 3 months from the time of initial exposure. Immediate escharotomy and/or fasciotomy is necessary when circulation is compromised. In addition to the acute injury, frostbite is associated with late sequelae that include altered vasomotor function, neuropathies, joint articular cartilage changes, and, in children, growth defects caused by epiphyseal plate damage.

    • Keywords:
    • Cold Temperature|Combined Modality Therapy|Extremities|Frostbite|Humans|Necrosis|Orthopedic Procedures|Rewarming

    • Subspecialty:
    • Trauma

    • Foot and Ankle

    • Shoulder and Elbow

Coronal plane partial articular fractures of the distal humerus: current concepts in management.

Partial articular fractures of the distal humerus commonly involve the capitellum and may extend medially to involve the trochlea. As the complex nature of capitellar fractures has become better appreciated, treatment options have evolved from closed reduction and immobilization and fragment excision to a preference for open reduction and internal fixation. The latter is now recommended to achieve stable anatomic reduction, restore articular congruity, and initiate early motion. More complex fracture patterns require extensile surgical exposures. The fractures are characterized by metaphyseal comminution of the lateral column and have associated ipsilateral radial head fracture. With advanced instrumentation, elbow arthroscopy may be used in the management of these articular fractures. Though limited to level IV evidence, clinical series reporting outcomes following open reduction and internal fixation of fractures of the capitellum, with or without associated injuries, have demonstrated good to excellent functional results in most patients when the injury is limited to the radiocapitellar compartment. Clinically significant osteonecrosis and heterotopic ossification are rare, but mild to moderate posttraumatic osteoarthrosis may be anticipated at midterm follow-up.

    • Keywords:
    • Arthroscopy|Biomechanics|Diagnostic Imaging|Fracture Fixation

    • Internal|Fracture Healing|Humans|Humeral Fractures|Orthopedic Procedures|Osteotomy

    • Subspecialty:
    • Trauma

    • Shoulder and Elbow

Hip disease in the young, active patient: evaluation and nonarthroplasty surgical options.

As a distinct entity, femoroacetabular impingement has been suggested to be a preosteoarthritic mechanism. The condition occurs when the proximal femur repeatedly comes into contact with the native acetabular rim during normal hip range of motion. Early diagnosis and surgical management are imperative to delay degenerative changes associated with these conditions. Femoroacetabular impingement is most prevalent in young, active patients. Physical examination should include evaluation of gait and foot progression angle, as well as leg length measurement, hip range of motion, and abductor strength. Imaging studies, including plain radiographs and magnetic resonance arthrography, aid in accurate diagnosis. Surgical treatment options include surgical hip dislocation, periacetabular osteotomy, and hip arthroscopy.

    • Keywords:
    • Acetabulum|Adult|Diagnostic Imaging|Femur|Hip Joint|Humans|Joint Diseases|Orthopedic Procedures|Osteotomy|Physical Examination|Range of Motion

    • Articular

    • Subspecialty:
    • Trauma

    • Pediatric Orthopaedics

The pivot shift.

The Lachman and the pivot shift are the two clinical tests most commonly used to assess instability in the anterior cruciate ligament (ACL)-deficient knee. Because it is quantifiable, the Lachman test has become the benchmark for assessing the success of ACL reconstruction. As a result, surgical techniques have been developed that effectively eliminate anterior laxity of the knee. Recent studies have shown, however, that rotational stability is not always restored after ACL reconstruction. Furthermore, there is mounting evidence that the pivot shift examination correlates with functional instability and patient outcomes better than does any other physical examination test. This test attempts to reproduce the functional combined rotary and translational instability in the ACL-deficient knee. Although the pathologic kinematics of the pivot shift are difficult to measure, recent technological advances have allowed more accurate and objective descriptions of the pivot shift, which have furthered our understanding of the complex motions involved. These advances may lead to a method of quantifying the pivot shift for research purposes and, ultimately, to ACL reconstruction that is tailored specifically to each patient's objectively measured rotational instability.

    • Keywords:
    • Anterior Cruciate Ligament|Humans|Joint Instability|Knee Injuries|Physical Examination|Range of Motion

    • Articular

    • Subspecialty:
    • Sports Medicine

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