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Arch Orthop Trauma Surg. 1998;117(3):147-52.

A new mechanical aiming device for the placement of distal interlocking screws in femoral nails.

Author information

  • 1Trauma Department, Hannover Medical School, Germany.

Abstract

Although the free-hand technique remains the most popular method for distal interlocking screw insertion, a proximally mounted "radiation-independent" device which compensates for implant deformation has been developed. In 15 intact human cadaveric femora the same surgeon performed statically locked intramedullary nailing using the distal aiming system. Operation time, distal screw insertion, total radiation time and accuracy of the interlocking screw placement were measured using a radiation-independent distal aiming system. The average total operation time was 21.2+/-8.6 min, and the average distal locking time (2 screws) was 7.1+/-2.4 min. The total operation time and the distal locking time declined over the first 10 cases. These times did not significantly improve in the subsequent 5 procedures. The average total fluoroscopy time was 28.1+/-16.6 s. None of the screw placements using the distal aiming device required the use of fluoroscopy. Drill-nail contact was absent in 5 drillings, mild in 9 drillings, moderate in 16 drillings, and severe in none. Measurement of screw damage showed in 55 of 60 measurements wear of less than 15 microm. There were no failures or major complications. A minor complication related to distal locking was observed in one specimen. This study suggests that distal interlocking screws can be placed successfully using a radiation-independent aiming arm-based system, which accounts for nail deformations. The distal aiming device (DAD) can be learned easily. The main advantages of the aiming arm include the elimination of radiation during distal interlocking and precise screw placement with little insertion-related hardware damage.

PMID:
9521519
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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