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J Foot Ankle Surg. 2011 Jul-Aug;50(4):388-90. doi: 10.1053/j.jfas.2011.04.019. Epub 2011 May 26.

Outcome of subtalar fusion using bovine cancellous bone graft: a retrospective case series.

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Department of Trauma and Orthopaedics, University Hospital of North Durham, Durham, United Kingdom.


Solvent preserved bovine cancellous bone graft (Tutobone(®)) has been promoted as an alternative to autologous bone graft. The aim of our study was to compare the outcomes of subtalar fusion in patients in whom Tutobone(®) was used with the outcomes in patients in whom it was not used. This was a retrospective comparative study. Tutobone(®) was used in 9 patients in the test group. Of these repairs, 6 were isolated subtalar fusions, and 3 were performed as a part of triple arthrodesis. A total of 17 patients were included in the control group; 4 underwent autologous iliac crest grafting and 13 received a local bone graft from excised joint surfaces. At 12 months after surgery, 8 of the 9 in the Tutobone(®) group had persistent pain and radiologic signs of nonunion confirmed on computed tomography scan. All 17 in the other group had successful clinical and radiologic fusion at 12 months. We believe this is sufficient evidence to advise against the use of bovine cancellous bone graft material for subtalar fusion surgery.

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