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Arch Orthop Trauma Surg. 2013 Mar;133(3):351-5. doi: 10.1007/s00402-012-1671-8. Epub 2012 Dec 25.

Eighteen-year follow-up after rotationplasty for a grade IIIC open fracture of the distal femur.

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Trauma Department, Hannover Medical School (MHH), Carl-Neuberg-Straße 1, Hannover, Germany.


We report the 18-year follow-up of a patient who underwent rotationplasty for severe bone loss and infection after an grade IIIC open fracture of the distal femur. The patient is now 49 years old and fully satisfied with his life. During the follow-up period, he has never had significant physical or psychological problems directly concerning the rotationplasty. The analysis of quality of life using the SF36 questionnaire revealed even higher scores than the normal healthy population in seven out of eight sub-categories. Clinical examination revealed bland soft tissues without hyperkeratosis or other signs of maladaptation. Articular and cutaneous proprioception was intact all over the left leg. The active extension/flexion of the prosthetic knee was 0°-0°-100° and 10°-0°-70° of the ankle joint. Manual testing of motor strength revealed grade five of five for dorsiflexion and plantar flexion of the ankle. Gait patterns including climbing slopes and stairs were close to normal. Examination in sports physiology showed lower maximum power of hip and knee muscles compared to the healthy side, but better muscular endurance. These findings emphasize that rotationplasty can be a good alternative to arthrodesis or amputation in trauma patients providing high satisfaction and activity levels in the long-term follow-up.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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