09 April 2018
As you can see on the images below, the injury was pretty significant, high energy trauma with an open distal femoral fracture (Gustilo-Andresen 3B).
11 April 2018
Definitive fixation was done as per our protocol above.
11 May 2018
Post operative X-rays are self explanatory.
31 May 2018
We will wait for 6 weeks before we do anything with the bone defect. One of the reasons is infection and the second one is spontaneous bony activity in the defect which is not as rare as someone would expect.
15 June 2018
Apart from pain in the thigh at the time of distraction everything else is going well. Clinically no sign of infection.
If you compare the plate shape prior the transport and now you will see a significant bent suggesting a significant force on the plate. Exactly what we usually see.
29 June 2018
14 July 2018
Good progress but there is a significant strain on the plate visible on the X-ray. I can only suspect that the force required for callus distraction can vary from patient to patient. I can see in the other patients that those plates are not loaded so much. We will probably have to consider augmentation of the plate.
For now I cannot see any sign of failure of the construct, eminent or waiting to happen, apart from the bend in the plate.
26 July 2018
Precice nail reached its final position in compression. To continue with the bone transport we have to:
Because we know that higher the number of procedures (opening of the skin), higher the chance of deep infection, we decided to proceed with percutaneous locking-unlocking and two anaesthetic sessions. First one first thing in the morning and second late in the afternoon leaving enough time to expand the nail using standard magnet.
Everything went extremely well. Exactly as planned. It did take some preparation to coordinate theatre time, distraction on the ward and reprogramming the magnet every 2.5mm due to the software limitations, but it was well worth it. Only three small wounds in combined length less than 2 cm.
07 August 2018
So far everything well. Flexion contracture is gradually improving.
28 August 2018
No major problems, but as you can see, the plate is more and more bent. Will need to augment it, just don't know exactly how. Various options in consideration.
10 September 2018
We have reached the end of the nail compression. Repositioning of the Precise nail was required.
Whilst the AxSos plate is still bent, it didn't look more bent than before, hence we decided not to augment it with another plate.
It looks that 6 hours of expanding the nail on the ward with standard magnet is a good alternative to relatively large approach and use of fast distractor whilst in theatre.
Unexpectedly the right hip is very stiff. Must admit I wasn't expecting that and haven't seen it before.
02 October 2018
It looks that the plate is bending. Not completely sure that there is massive difference since the last X-ray but the plate is definitively bend.
In my opinion if we slow the transport will very likely create even more strain on the plate causing more bent comparing to proceed with the same speed and not let the regenerate mature prematurely. It is certainly a difficult call.
Mr Matija Krkovic, MD, PhD
I am Consultant Orthopaedic Trauma Surgeon with special interest in Limb reconstructions and bone infections.