[Prevention and treatment of perioperative period complication of total ankle replacement]

Xiang Liao, Zhizeng Gao, Shanhu Huang, Shuhua Yang
Chinese Journal of Reparative and Reconstructive Surgery 2008, 22 (1): 40-3

OBJECTIVE: To explore the cause of the perioprative period complication of scandinavian total ankle replacement (STAR) and to summarize the experience in the treatment and prevention.

METHODS: From March 1999 to November 2006, 35 patients were given total ankle replacement (TAR) with STAR system. There were 19 males and 16 females with an average age of 50.5 years (27 to 68 years), including 12 cases of posttraumatic arthritis, 8 cases of osteoarthritis and 15 cases of rheumatoid arthritis. All patients had pain of ankle joint, swelling and limitation of joint motion. The disease course was 9-64 months. The curative effect was estimated by Kofoed total ankle scoring system. The mean preoperative ankle score was 29 (6-48); the mean pain score was 18.3 (0-35); the mean function score was 11.7 (6-18); and the mean activity score was 9.2 (3-12). The type of all complications were record, and its cause, prevetion and treatment were analyszed.

RESULTS: Thirty-three patients achieved healing by first intention, 2 achieved delayed union because of infection. Twenty-eight patients were followed up 3-80 months (mean 43.5 months). Medial malleolus fracture occurred in 2 cases, unstable ankle joint introversion in 2 cases, limitation of ankle dorsiextension in 1 case and 1 case had hypoesthesia at intermediate dorsal skin of foot and 3rd-5th metatarsal skin without obvious dysfunction; all were treated with symptomatic medication. The postoperative mean ankle score was 85.5 (58-95); the mean pain score was 48.3 (35-50); the mean function score was 20.7 (18-30); the mean activity score was 17.2 (16-20). There were statistically significant differences when compared with preoperative score (P<0.01). The clinical results were excellent in 16 patients, good in 9 patients and fair in 3 patients. The X-ray films showed no loosening and subsidence of prosthesis.

CONCLUSION: Although STAR can retain the functions of the operated joint, it has its special complications. It is important to obey operation principle with proficient operative technique, to strictly control surgical indication and to intensify perioperative period treatment so as to decrease the complications.

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