Secondary intramedullary nailing after distraction osteogenesis30 patients followed for 2–12 years
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BACKGROUND: There is no consensus about replacement of an external fixator by reamed intramedullary nailing in fracture cases. PATIENTS AND METHODS: We evaluated the outcome in 30 patients (33 segments) of secondary intramedullary nailing during the consolidation phase after callus distraction using an external device. The main reasons for nailing were docking site nonunion (17 patients), angular deformity or fracture of the lengthened area (8 patients) or intolerance of the external device (5 patients), in 11 patients combined with a delayed distracted callus maturation. The average follow-up time was 4 (2-12) years. RESULTS: Intramedullary infection after nailing occurred in 1 case, and slight loss in callus length in 5 cases. Failure of union at the docking site with nail breakage occurred in 1 case. In the other patients, consolidation in the lengthened callus area and also union at the docking site were achieved on average 6 months after nailing. INTERPRETATION: We believe that intramedullary nailing during the consolidation phase after bone lengthening or bone transport is a treatment option for delayed callus maturation or docking site nonunion, reducing prolonged use of the external fixator.
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