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Injury. 2005 Jan;36(1):203-6.

Percutaneous bone marrow grafting for the treatment of tibial non-union.

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University Hospital Aintree, 33 Irene Road, Liverpool L16 8 NS, UK.


This is a prospective study to evaluate the efficacy of percutanous bone marrow grafting in patients with established tibial non-union and minimal deformity, whilst on the waiting list for open surgical procedures. Twenty consecutive patients with established tibial non-union and minimal deformity were treated by percutanous bone marrow injection under local anaesthesia. Bone marrow was obtained from the iliac crest, 3-5 ml of marrow was aspirated and injected immediately into and about the non-union site. Subsequent aspirations were performed 1 cm posterior to the previous site until a maximum of 15 ml of marrow was injected. Our results revealed clinical and radiological bone union following percutanous injection in 15 out of 20 patients (75%), with an average time to union following the first injection of 14 weeks. Four patients (20%) showed no evidence of union and were considered a failure. There were no cases of infection following the injection, and no complications at the donor site. We conclude that percutanous bone marrow grafting is a safe, simple, and reliable method of treating tibial non-union with minimal deformity. It is a limited invasive technique with minimal complications. It can be performed under local anaesthesia, is cost effective and potentially can avoid major surgical reconstruction.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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