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J Bone Jt Infect. 2016 Mar 5;1:10-16. doi: 10.7150/jbji.14342. eCollection 2016.

Comparison of Bone Preserving and Radical Surgical Treatment in 32 Cases of Calcaneal Osteomyelitis.

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Department of Orthopaedics and Traumatology, Medical University of Warsaw, ul. Lindley'a 4, 02-005 Warsaw, Poland.


Introduction. Radical procedures like calcanectomy and amputation performed for calcaneal osteomyelitis are regarded as effective in eradication of infection even though potentially functionally disabling. Bone sparing procedures offer better functional result at the expense of potentially worse infection control. The aim of the study has been to assess the influence of the surgical radicalism as much as the extent of bone infection on the final outcome in the surgical therapy of chronic calcaneal osteomyelitis (CO). Material and method. 32 patients with chronic CO have comprised the group under study: 8 with superficial type, 12 localised type and 12 with diffuse type according to Cierny-Mader classification. The aim of the treatment was to heal infection, preserve the heel shape and achieve good skin coverage over the calcaneus. The therapy consisted of 9 debridement surgeries with or without flaps, 8 drilling-operations of the calcaneus with application of collagen-gentamicin-sponge in bore holes, 15 partial and 2 total calcanectomies, and 4 below-the knee amputations. Results. The healing of infection and wound has been achieved after 7 of 9 debridements, 6 of 8 drilling-operations, 13 of 15 partial and all total calcanectomies. Conclusion. Bone preserving operations in chronic calcaneal osteomyelitis provided inferior infection control (76,47% vs 88,24%) and worse patient satisfaction (88,24% vs 100%) and almost camparable ambulation (100% vs 93,33%). Drilling of the calcaneus with application of collagen sponge containing gentamicin performed in chronic diffuse calcaneal osteomyelitis seems to offer a viable alternative to partial or radical calcanectomy.




calcanectomy, collagen-gentamicin sponge; chronic calcaneal osteomyelitis; local antibiotic application.

Conflict of interest statement

Competing Interests: The authors have declared that no competing interest exists.

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