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Foot Ankle Int. 2012 Mar;33(3):190-5.

Sutures versus sterile strips for closure of ankle arthroscopy portals: prospective crossover trial.

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Aristotelian University of Thessaloniki, 1st Orthopaedic Department, E. Amynis 18, Thessaloniki 54621, Greece.



Either a nylon single suture or adhesive tape in the form of Steri strip are commonly used for the closure of portals in ankle arthroscopy. The purpose of this study was to compare the two methods with regards to their safety, complications and cosmetic result.


This was a prospective cross over study of 100 patients who underwent ankle arthroscopy. Materials used for wound closure were either a 3-0 nylon suture or a single Steri strip. Portals were reviewed according to a validated wound scoring system. Parameters such as the age and gender of the patients, the duration of tourniquet use and the use of an intraarticular corticosteroid injection at wound closure were also studied.


Ninety-five patients were included in the statistical analysis. No technique was found to be superior in terms of the wound description (p = 0.164), infection grade (p = 0.232), infection treatment (p = 0.557) and the cosmetic appearance (p = 0.371). Seventy-two percent of patients had a good to excellent cosmetic result. There were two cases of infection requiring administration of antibiotics, one from each method of closure. Of the independent parameters, the use of cortisone was related to a lower infection treatment score (p = 0.013). Patients with signs of infection had a shorter total tourniquet time compared to the patients with no infection (p = 0.002).


The use of either a single suture or Steri strip in the closure of ankle arthoscopy portals has equivalent results. Both methods were safe with equivalent cosmesis and low infection rates.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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