The Medoff sliding plate and a standard sliding hip screw for unstable intertrochanteric fractures: a mechanical comparison in cadaver femurs

O Olsson, F J Kummer, L Ceder, K J Koval, S Larsson, J D Zuckerman
Acta Orthopaedica Scandinavica 1998, 69 (3): 266-72
The Medoff sliding plate has a dual side capability along both the femoral shaft and neck to increase theoretically interfragmentary compression and load-sharing in hip fractures. We studied intertrochanteric fracture fixation in cadaveric bone to determine whether this device has a mechanical advantage over a standard sliding hip screw. 2-part and 4-part fractures were created in 12 cadaver femurs. The fractures were fixated and sequentially destabilized; bone and plate strains and fragment displacements were determined during testing, as a function of applied physiological loads before and after short-term cycling. The Medoff sliding plate imposed a higher mean medial cortex strain than the sliding hip screw in all fracture models and at all loading levels, and the difference was statistically significant in the 2-part and in the unstable 4-part fracture models. The loading of the medial cortex region after cycling was approximately 50% higher in the Medoff samples than in the sliding hip screw samples. There were no significant differences in plate strains, fracture displacements or load to failure between the 2 devices. These observations favor the dual sliding principle as regards providing fracture compression and load-sharing, which may explain low failure rates in clinical series of unstable intertrochanteric fractures, treated with the Medoff sliding plate.

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