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Clin Orthop Relat Res. 2005 Feb;(431):207-12.

Suture-button syndesmosis fixation: accelerated rehabilitation and improved outcomes.

Author information

1
Department of Orthopaedics, Limerick Regional Hospital, Limerick, Ireland. brianthornes@esatclear.ie

Abstract

Syndesmosis screws have significant problems including loosening, breakage, the need for removal, and late diastasis. A new technique of syndesmosis fixation is proposed in this study, in which a heavy suture is placed across the syndesmosis, which has been looped and tightened through cortical button anchors on either side of the ankle. Indirect placement of the medial button avoids a medial incision. Sixteen patients had this suture-button fixation in a prospective clinical study. Mean American Orthopaedic Foot and Ankle Society ankle scores were significantly better in patients who had suture-button fixation than in a comparative group of 16 patients who had syndesmosis screw fixation at 3 months (91 versus 80, respectively) and at 12 months postoperatively (93 versus 83, respectively). Return to work was faster (2.8 months in patients who had suture-button fixation versus 4.6 months who had syndesmosis screw fixation), and no patients who had suture-buttons required secondary surgery for implant removal. Axial computed tomography scanning at 3 months showed maintenance of reduction. Suture-button fixation is simple, safe, and effective. Patients have had improved outcomes and faster rehabilitation, without needing routine implant removal. It may become the treatment of choice in patients with a syndesmosis injury.

PMID:
15685077
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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