JAAOS

JAAOS, Volume 24, No. 6


Cervical Spine Instrumentation in Children

Instrumentation of the cervical spine enhances stability and improves arthrodesis rates in children undergoing surgery for deformity or instability. Various morphologic and clinical studies have been conducted in children, confirming the feasibility of anterior or posterior instrumentation of the cervical spine with modern implants. Knowledge of the relevant spine anatomy and preoperative imaging studies can aid the clinician in understanding the pitfalls of instrumentation for each patient. Preoperative planning, intraoperative positioning, and adherence to strict surgical techniques are required given the small size of children. Instrumentation options include anterior plating, occipital plating, and a variety of posterior screw techniques. Complications related to screw malposition include injury to the vertebral artery, neurologic injury, and instrumentation failure.

      • Subspecialty:
      • Pediatric Orthopaedics

    Corrosion of the Head-neck Junction After Total Hip Arthroplasty

    Corrosion of the head-neck junction of implants used in total hip arthroplasty is a complex problem. Clinical severity appears to be multifactorial, and the predictive variables have yet to be consistently identified in the literature. Corrosion should be considered in the differential diagnosis of hip pain following total hip arthroplasty regardless of the type of bearing surface used. The most common presentation, pain followed by instability, is similar to complications associated with metal-on-metal articulations. The diagnosis of implant corrosion of the head-neck junction can be challenging; an infection workup should be performed along with analysis of serum metal ion levels and cross-sectional imaging. In the short term, a well-fixed stem may be retained, and the exchange of an isolated head with a ceramic femoral head seems to be a promising option for certain implants. Further research with longer follow-up is warranted, and high levels of evidence are needed to determine whether this approach is generalizable.

        • Subspecialty:
        • Adult Reconstruction

      Emerging Techniques for Posterior Fixation of the Lumbar Spine

      Pedicle screw fixation is the preferred method of posterior fusion in lumbar spinal surgery. The technique provides three-column support of the vertebrae, contributing to the biomechanical strength of the construct. However, open pedicle screw fixation often necessitates wide posterior exposure and dissection with soft-tissue disruption of the facet joint. Alternative posterior fixation techniques have been developed to reduce surgical time, soft-tissue dissection, disruption of the adjacent facet joint capsule, neurologic risk, and implant cost. Results of these techniques are comparable to those of standard pedicle screw fixation systems. Certain patients, especially those at a lower risk of nonunion or those who require posterior fixation only as an adjunct to anterior column support, may benefit from the shorter surgical time and limited posterior exposure of the alternative techniques. However, the decreased rigidity of these alternative constructs can result in excessive motion, which can lead to nonunion and early hardware failure.

          • Subspecialty:
          • Spine

        Enthesopathy of the Extensor Carpi Radialis Brevis Origin: Effective Communication Strategies

        Enthesopathy of the extensor carpi radialis brevis origin, generally known as tennis elbow, is a common condition arising in middle-aged persons. The diagnosis is typically clear based on the patient interview and physical examination alone; therefore, imaging and other diagnostic tests are usually unnecessary. The natural history of the disorder is spontaneous resolution, but it can last for >1 year. The patient’s attitude and circumstances, including stress, distress, and ineffective coping strategies, determine the intensity of the pain and the magnitude of the disability. Despite the best efforts of medical science, no treatments, invasive or noninvasive, have been proven to alter the natural history of the condition. Given the lack of diseasemodifying treatments for enthesopathy of the extensor carpi radialis brevis origin, orthopaedic surgeons can benefit from learning effective communication strategies to help convey accurate information that is hopeful and enabling.

            • Subspecialty:
            • Hand and Wrist

          Fractures and Dislocations of the Tarsal Navicular

          Fractures of the tarsal navicular are commonly the result of trauma or chronic overload. Because of its complex anatomy and blood supply, the tarsal navicular is susceptible to osteonecrosis, and injury to this bone can lead to posttraumatic arthrosis of the surrounding joints. Diagnosis of the injury, especially in patients with stress fractures, can require a high index of suspicion and the use of advanced imaging. The treatment of stress fracture is controversial and ranges from immobilization in a non–weight-bearing cast or boot to internal fixation with or without bone grafting. Traumatic fractures are treated with open reduction and internal fixation with or without external fixation for medial and lateral column stabilization. To avoid a poor outcome, concomitant injuries must be recognized and treated. Despite appropriate treatment, patients may ultimately require fusion procedures to address ongoing pain and disability.

              • Subspecialty:
              • Foot and Ankle

            Musculoskeletal Injuries in Iraq and Afghanistan: Epidemiology and Outcomes Following a Decade of War

            The combined wars in Afghanistan and Iraq represent the longest ongoing conflicts in American military history, with a combined casualty estimate of >59,000 service members. The nature of combat over the last decade has led to precipitous increases in severe orthopaedic injuries, including traumatic amputations and injuries to the spine. Nearly 75% of all injuries sustained in combat now are caused by explosive mechanisms, and fractures comprise 40% of all musculoskeletal injuries. Injuries to the axial skeleton are more frequent among personnel exposed to combat, and spinal trauma is identified in nearly 40% of those killed. Musculoskeletal injuries are expensive and generate some of the highest rates of long-term disability. Noncombat musculoskeletal injuries are endemic within deployed military service members and occur at a greater than threefold rate compared with combat musculoskeletal injuries. Service members with musculoskeletal injuries or behavioral health conditions, such as posttraumatic stress disorder, depression, and psychosis, and those occupying a low socioeconomic status, have an increased risk of inferior outcomes.

                • Subspecialty:
                • Trauma

              Nail Length in the Management of Intertrochanteric Fracture of the Femur

              Intramedullary devices are used increasingly to treat intertrochanteric femur fractures, especially those with unstable patterns. In spite of the considerable use of nails in the management of these fractures, opinions differ about the correct length of intramedullary nail. Long nails were developed to address the risk of diaphyseal fracture associated with earlier short nail designs and to extend the indications for use to include diaphyseal and subtrochanteric fractures. Several recent studies, however, have found no differences between modern short nails and long nails with regard to union and complication rates. In the absence of existing guidelines, the treating surgeon's preference and fracture characteristics continue to influence the decision of whether to use short nails or long nails. The surgeon needs to consider the fracture configuration and related factors, including whether osteoporosis is present and the cost and risk of revision surgery, when selecting the appropriate nail length.

                  • Subspecialty:
                  • Trauma

                Subtotal Scapulectomy With Scapulothoracic Fusion and Local Tendon Transfer for Management of Chondrosarcoma

                Scapulectomy can dramatically alter glenohumeral function and the ability of patients to conduct activities of daily living. In oncologic cases, treatment of the tumor can compromise local musculature, making successful reconstruction difficult to achieve. Depending on the resection level, local musculature may be inadequate to restore shoulder range of motion and/or glenohumeral stability. Surgeons have attempted to address these issues via soft-tissue repairs, allograft replacement, and prosthetic replacement, with variable success. Outcomes are better when a greater portion of the scapula is preserved, thus saving functional rotator cuff muscle bellies. However, preservation of significant rotator cuff musculature is not routinely possible. To our knowledge, no authors in the English-language orthopaedic literature have reported on local tendon transfers as a technique to augment and reconstruct the rotator cuff in a patient with previous scapulectomy.

                    • Subspecialty:
                    • Musculoskeletal Oncology

                  The Epidemiology of Primary and Revision Total Hip Arthroplasty in Teaching and Nonteaching Hospitals in the United States

                  Introduction: The purpose of this study was to examine the epidemiology of primary and revision total hip arthroplasty (THA) in teaching and nonteaching hospitals.

                  Methods: The Healthcare Cost and Utilization Project Nationwide Inpatient Sample was queried from 2006 to 2010 to identify primary and revision THAs at teaching and nonteaching hospitals.

                  Results: A total of 1,336,396 primary and 223,520 revision procedures were identified. Forty-six percent of all primary and 54% of all revision procedures were performed at teaching hospitals. Teaching hospitals performed 17% of their THAs as revisions; nonteaching hospitals performed 12% as revisions. For primary and revision THAs, teaching hospitals had fewer patients aged >65 years, fewer Medicare patients, similar gender rates, more nonwhite patients, and more patients in the highest income quartile compared with nonteaching hospitals. Costs, length of stay, and Charlson Comorbidity Index scores were similar; however, the mortality rate was lower at teaching hospitals.

                  Conclusions: This study found small but significant differences in key epidemiologic and outcome variables in examining primary and revision THA at teaching and nonteaching hospitals.

                  Level of Evidence: Level III

                      • Subspecialty:
                      • Adult Reconstruction

                    Ultrasonography-guided de Quervain Injection: Accuracy and Anatomic Considerations in a Cadaver Model

                    Introduction: Confirmation of pertinent anatomy and accurate needle placement for de Quervain injection may improve outcomes and limit complications. We evaluated the accuracy of the first extensor compartment in regard to the following: (1) anatomic assessment, (2) needle placement without imaging guidance, and (3) ultrasonography-guided injection with priority for the extensor pollicis brevis subcompartment.

                    Methods: Anatomic assessment and ultrasonography-guided first extensor compartment injection was completed in 50 cadaver specimens. Initial needle placement was done without the guidance of ultrasonography; its final position was evaluated with ultrasonography. Then, using ultrasonography, 1 mL of India ink was injected into the extensor pollicis brevis compartment. Open evaluation confirmed pertinent anatomy and injection accuracy.

                    Results: A subcompartment of the first extensor compartment was identified in 27 of 50 wrists; 18 of 27 compartments were complete and 9 of 27 were incomplete, with ultrasonographic evaluation having an accuracy rate of 94%. Accurate needle placement occurred in 26 of 50 wrists (52%) when ultrasonography was not used, but only 2 of 27 needles (7%) were located within the extensor pollicis brevis subcompartment. Ultrasonography-guided injection was 100% accurate (50 out of 50) and extensor pollicis brevis injection was 96% accurate (26 of 27) when two compartments were present. Minimal extravasation was identified in 6 of 50 wrists (12%).

                    Discussion: Ultrasonography-guided de Quervain injection improves injection accuracy through the visualization of compartmental anatomy and needle placement and may improve clinical outcomes by minimizing complications associated with extra-compartmental injection.

                        • Subspecialty:
                        • Hand and Wrist

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