Reconstructive osteotomy of fibular malunion: Review of the literature

Remco J.A. van Wensen, Michel P.J. van den Bekerom, R. K. Marti, Ronald J. van Heerwaarden

Research output: Contribution to JournalReview articleAcademicpeer-review

Abstract

The treatment of ankle fractures has a primary goal of restoring the full function of the injured extremity. Malunion of the fibula is the most common and most difficult ankle malunion to reconstruct. The most frequent malunions of the fibula are shortening and malrotation resulting in widening of the ankle mortise and talar instability, which may lead to posttraumatic osteoarthritis. The objective of this article is to review the literature concerning the results of osteotomies for correcting fibular malunions and to formulate recommendations for clinical practice. Based on available literature, corrective osteotomies for fibular malunion have good or excellent results in more than 75% of the patients. Reconstructive fibular osteotomy has been recommended to avoid or postpone sequela of posttraumatic degeneration, an ankle arthrodesis or supramalleolar osteotomy. The development of degenerative changes is not fully predictable; therefore, it is advisable to reconstruct a fibular malunion soon after the diagnosis is made and in presence of a good ankle function. Recommendations were made for future research because of the low level of evidence of available literature on reconstructive osteotomies of fibular malunions.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)51-57
Number of pages7
JournalStrategies in Trauma and Limb Reconstruction
Volume6
Issue number2
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 1 Aug 2011
Externally publishedYes

Keywords

  • Ankle
  • Fibula
  • Fracture
  • Malunion
  • Operative procedures
  • Osteotomy

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