alexa Effect of polyethylene component thickness on range of motion and stability in primary total knee arthroplasty.
Orthopaedics

Orthopaedics

Journal of Arthritis

Author(s): Lanting BA

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Total knee arthroplasty (TKA) is a common procedure with good survivorship and functional results. Optimal results are dependent on proper osseous cuts and soft tissue balancing. Soft tissue tensioning via the polyethylene spacer thickness is an important component of soft tissue balancing. Increased thickness increases soft tissue tension and, therefore, has the potential to increase stability but decrease range of motion (ROM). Decreased polyethylene thickness may decrease soft tissue tension and has the potential to increase ROM but decrease stability. Using computer-based navigation, the intraoperative effect of increasing and decreasing polyethylene thickness in 1-mm increments on ROM and coronal stability throughout the ROM of 35 patients was examined. It was found that increasing the polyethylene thickness by 1-mm increments had a statistically significant impact on the ability to achieve full extension but had no impact on flexion. Increased polyethylene thickness decreased coronal plane motion. Coronal plane laxity increased with increased flexion irrespective of polyethylene thickness. In this patient cohort, lateral laxity became >1° when the knee was flexed. However, medial structures prevented valgus angulation of >1° in all scenarios except when the polyethylene was diminished by 2 mm. Changes in polyethylene thickness had an impact on the ability to gain full extension and coronal plane motion.

This article was published in Orthopedics and referenced in Journal of Arthritis

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