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Arthrodesis with a Short Huckstep Nail as a Salvage Procedure for Failed Total Knee Arthroplasty*
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Investigation performed at the Department of Orthopaedics, National Cheng Kung University Medical Center, Tainan
J Bone Joint Surg Am, 1998 Mar 01;80(3):380-8
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Arthrodesis of the knee with use of a short Huckstep nail was performed in thirty-three patients (thirty-three knees) after failure of a non-constrained total knee arthroplasty. The indication for the arthrodesis was an infection in thirty-one knees and a Charcot joint in two. Three knees had had a failed attempt at arthrodesis with use of external fixation.The Huckstep nail was inserted through the knee, retrograde into the femur, and then antegrade into the tibia. The duration of the operation averaged 104 minutes (range, sixty-five to 155 minutes). Local bone graft was used in all knees. At the time of follow-up, at an average of forty-seven months (range, eighteen to ninety-four months), thirty knees (91 per cent) had radiographic evidence of union. The average time to union was 5.2 months (range, two to ten months) after the arthrodesis. Eight knees that had a grossly purulent infection were treated with débridement, which was followed by the arthrodesis as a second-stage procedure; the other knees had a one-stage arthrodesis. Only one of the thirty-one knees that had had an infection before the arthrodesis had a recurrence after it.Arthrodesis with a short Huckstep nail provides immediate axial and rotational stability and allows weight-bearing without use of external support as well as placement of the knee in a slightly flexed and valgus position. In addition, the nail does not migrate and it may be used even when there is a standard-size prosthesis in the ipsilateral hip.

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    These activities have been planned and implemented in accordance with the Essential Areas and policies of the Accreditation Council for Continuing Medical Education (ACCME) through the joint sponsorship of the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons and The Journal of Bone and Joint Surgery, Inc. The American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons is accredited by the ACCME to provide continuing medical education for physicians.
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