JAAOS, Volume 22, No. 10

Agricultural Injuries to the Hand and Upper Extremity

Agricultural injuries involving the hand and upper extremity are common, debilitating injuries that reflect the significant occupational hazards associated with the agricultural industry. Farm injuries occur in all age groups and are associated with significant resource utilization and treatment costs. Most of these injuries are associated with machinery, including tractors, power take-off devices, grain augers, hay balers, and combine harvesters. Each piece of machinery produces specific injury patterns and a spectrum of bone and soft-tissue injuries that are frequently characterized by the loss of a digit or limb, permanent disability, loss of function, and serious complications such as infection. Management of agricultural injuries includes expedient administration of antibiotic and tetanus prophylaxis, aggressive irrigation, serial débridement, consideration of delayed wound closure, and reconstruction or replantation of amputated digits and limbs, if feasible.

      • Subspecialty:
      • Trauma

      • Hand and Wrist

    Approach to Pain Management in Chronic Opioid Users Undergoing Orthopaedic Surgery

    Opioids are commonly used for the management of pain in patients with musculoskeletal disorders; however, national attention has highlighted the potential adverse effects of the use of opioid analgesia in this and other nonmalignant pain settings. Chronic opioid users undergoing orthopaedic surgery represent a particularly challenging patient population in regard to their perioperative pain control and outcomes. Preoperative evaluation provides an opportunity to estimate a patient's preoperative opioid intake, discuss pain-related fears, and identify potential psychiatric comorbidities. Patients using high levels of opioids may also require referral to an addiction specialist. Various regional blockade and pharmaceutical options are available to help control perioperative pain, and a multimodal pain management approach may be of particular benefit in chronic opioid users undergoing orthopaedic surgery.

        • Subspecialty:
        • Pain Management

      Flatfoot Deformity in Children and Adolescents: Surgical Indications and Management

      Most children with flatfeet are asymptomatic and will never require treatment. In general, flatfoot deformity is flexible and will not cause pain or disability; it is a normal variant of foot shape. Thus, it is essential to reassure and educate patients and parents. A flatfoot with a contracture of the Achilles tendon may be painful. In these cases, a stretching program may help relieve pain. Scant convincing evidence exists to support the use of inserts or shoe modifications for effective relief of symptoms, and there is no evidence that those devices change the shape of the foot. The surgeon must be vigilant to identify the rare rigid flatfoot. Indications for flatfoot surgery are strict: failure of prolonged nonsurgical attempts to relieve pain that interferes with normal activities and occurs under the medial midfoot and/or in the sinus tarsi. In nearly all cases, an associated contracture of the heel cord is present. Osteotomies with supplemental soft-tissue procedures are the best proven approach for management of rigid flatfoot.

          • Subspecialty:
          • Pediatric Orthopaedics

        Radial Head Arthroplasty: State of the Art

        Radial head arthroplasty has joined the armamentarium of options for the treatment of complex radial head fractures, elbow instability, and arthritic conditions. A variety of implants has been introduced in the past decade; these differ in metallic composition, design, and method of fixation. Good short- and intermediate-term outcomes have been reported with the use of loose-fitting prostheses. Press-fit devices restore stability and improve pain and motion but are associated with a greater likelihood of implant loosening, leading to revision surgery. Postoperative elbow stiffness, pain, ulnar nerve palsy, posterior interosseous nerve palsy, and heterotopic ossification have all been reported following radial head surgery, but these complications are likely related to the trauma sustained by the elbow. Adequate knowledge of the surgical indications, types of implants, and surgical technique are essential for a satisfactory outcome when a radial head prosthesis is used for the treatment of nonreconstructable radial head fractures.

            • Subspecialty:
            • Shoulder and Elbow

          Diagnosis and Management of Langerhans Cell Histiocytosis

          Langerhans cell histiocytosis is a rare group of disorders without a well-understood etiology. Known formerly as histiocytosis X, the disease has a wide spectrum of clinical presentations, including eosinophilic granuloma (solitary bone lesion), diabetes insipidus, and exophthalmos. It is also known by several eponyms, including Hand-Schüller-Christian disease when it manifests as a triad of cranial bone lesions and Letterer-Siwe disease when it is found in infantile patients with severely disseminated disease. Children aged 5 to 15 years are most commonly affected. Many of these patients initially present to orthopaedic surgeons, and misdiagnosis is frequent. To accurately diagnosis and treat these patients, the orthopaedic surgeon must be familiar with the clinical manifestations and pathophysiology of the disease as well as the treatment guidelines and outcomes for Langerhans cell histiocytosis.

              • Subspecialty:
              • Musculoskeletal Oncology

            Vertebroplasty and Kyphoplasty for the Treatment of Osteoporotic Vertebral Compression Fractures

            Vertebroplasty and kyphoplasty have been used to treat osteoporotic compression fractures for many years. In 2009, two randomized controlled trials demonstrated limited effectiveness of vertebroplasty over sham treatment; thus, the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons published evidence-based guidelines recommending "against vertebroplasty for patients who present with an osteoporotic spinal compression fracture." However, several other trials have since been published that contradict these conclusions. A recent meta-analysis cited strong evidence in favor of cement augmentation in the treatment of symptomatic vertebral compression fractures.

                • Subspecialty:
                • Spine

              Controversies in the Intramedullary Nailing of Proximal and Distal Tibia Fractures

              Management of tibia fractures by internal fixation, particularly intramedullary nails, has become the standard for diaphyseal fractures. However, for metaphyseal fractures or those at the metaphyseal-diaphyseal junction, choice of fixation device and technique is controversial. For distal tibia fractures, nailing and plating techniques may be used, the primary goal of each being to achieve acceptable alignment with minimal complications. Different techniques for reduction of these fractures are available and can be applied with either fixation device. Overall outcomes appear to be nearly equivalent, with minor differences in complications. Proximal tibia fractures can be fixed using nailing, which is associated with deformity of the proximal short segment. A newer technique—suprapatellar nailing—may minimize these problems, and use of this method has been increasing in trauma centers. However, most of the data are still largely based on case series.

                  • Subspecialty:
                  • Trauma