Author(s): Ostrum RF
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Abstract The current study is a review of 20 patients treated by percutaneous stabilization for a floating knee. All patients were treated with a retrograde femoral intramedullary nail and a small diameter tibial intramedullary nail through a 4-cm medial parapatellar tendon incision. The average Injury Severity Score was 19. Two patients died in the early postoperative period and one patient was lost to followup. The average time to union for the 17 remaining patients with femoral shaft fractures was 14.7 weeks. One patient required dynamization. Four of the 17 patients with tibia fractures required an exchange nailing procedure, one with bone graft, to achieve union. One patient required dynamization and one patient with bone loss required only a bone graft. The average time to union for the tibia fractures was 23 weeks. One patient achieved 115 degrees knee flexion and the remaining 15 patients had full knee motion by 12 weeks, which they were able to maintain. No patient had signs or symptoms of knee pain. This demanding surgical technique using a small incision has yielded good clinical results. Although it is an excellent treatment option for patients with ipsilateral femoral and tibial shaft fractures, the mortality and tibial fracture complication rates remain high.
This article was published in Clin Orthop Relat Res
and referenced in Orthopedic & Muscular System: Current Research