JOURNAL ARTICLE

Correction of coronal plane deformities around the knee using a tension band plate in children younger than 10 years

Ruta M Kulkarni, Faizaan M Ilyas Rushnaiwala, G S Kulkarni, Rajiv Negandhi, Milind G Kulkarni, Sunil G Kulkarni
Indian Journal of Orthopaedics 2015, 49 (2): 208-18
26015611

BACKGROUND: Guided growth through temporary hemiepiphysiodesis has gained acceptance as the preferred primary treatment in treating pediatric lower limb deformities as it is minimally invasive with a lesser morbidity than the traditional osteotomy. The tension band plate is the most recent development in implants used for temporary hemiepiphysiodesis. Our aim was to determine its safety and efficacy in correcting coronal plane deformities around the knee in children younger than 10 years.

MATERIALS AND METHODS: A total of 24 children under the age of 10 were operated for coronal plane deformities around the knee with a single extra periosteal tension band plate and two nonlocking screws. All the children had a pathological deformity for which a detailed preoperative work-up was carried out to ascertain the cause of the deformity and rule out physiological ones. The average age at hemiepiphysiodesis was 5 years 3 months (range: 2 years to 9 years 1 month).

RESULTS: The plates were inserted for an average of 15.625 months (range: 7 months to 29 months). All the patients showed improvement in the mechanical axis. Two patients showed partial correction. Two cases of screw loosening were observed. In the genu valgum group, the tibiofemoral angle improved from a preoperative mean of 19.89° valgus (range: 10° valgus to 40° valgus) to 5.72° valgus (range: 2° varus to 10° valgus). In patients with genu varum the tibiofemoral angle improved from a mean of 28.27° varus (range: 13° varus to 41° varus) to 1.59° valgus (range: 0-8° valgus).

CONCLUSION: Temporary hemiepiphysiodesis through the application of the tension band plate is an effective method to correct coronal plane deformities around the knee with minimal complications. Its ease and accuracy of insertion has extended the indication of temporary hemiepiphysiodesis to patients younger than 10 years and across a wide variety of diagnosis including pathological physis, which were traditionally out of the purview of guided growth.

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