jaaos, Volume 19, No. 10

Biologic and Pharmacologic Augmentation of Rotator Cuff Repairs

As rotator cuff repair techniques have improved, failure of the tendon to heal to the proximal humerus is less likely to occur from weak tendon-to-bone fixation. More likely causes of failure include biologic factors such as intrinsic tendon degeneration, fatty atrophy, fatty infiltration of muscle, and lack of vascularity of the tendons. High failure rates have led to the investigation of biologic augmentation to potentially enhance the healing response. Histologic studies have shown that restoration of the rotator cuff footprint during repair can help reestablish the enthesis. In animal models, growth factors and their delivery scaffolds as well as tissue engineering have shown promise in decreasing scar tissue while maintaining biomechanical strength. Platelet-rich plasma may be a safe adjuvant to rotator cuff repair, but it has not been shown to improve healing or function. Many of these strategies need to be further defined to permit understanding of, and to optimize, the biologic environment; in addition, techniques need to be refined for clinical use.

      • Subspecialty:
      • Shoulder and Elbow

    The Role of High Tibial Osteotomy in the Varus Knee

    High tibial osteotomy (HTO) is a widely performed procedure, and good results can be achieved with appropriate patient selection and precise surgical technique. Clinical indications include varus alignment of the knee associated with medial compartment arthrosis, knee instability, medial compartment overload following meniscectomy, and osteochondral defects requiring resurfacing procedures. Coronal alignment (ie, varus, valgus) and sagittal alignment (ie, tibial slope) should be thoroughly evaluated in all cases. Many techniques have been described for HTO, whether alone or in combination with other procedures (eg, anterior cruciate ligament reconstruction, meniscal transplant, cartilage resurfacing). Little direct evidence exists regarding the effectiveness of HTO alone or in combination with other procedures because of the lack of randomized controlled studies. However, it is commonly accepted that correct alignment is essential in achieving durable results.

        • Subspecialty:
        • Adult Reconstruction

      Pediatric Cervical Spine Trauma

      Pediatric cervical spine injuries are rare and are associated with significant morbidity and mortality. Pediatric anatomy and physiology predispose to upper cervical spine injury and spinal cord injury without radiologic abnormality in contrast to lower cervical spine injury seen in adults. Care of pediatric patients is difficult because they have a greater head-to-body ratio than adults and may have difficulty cooperating with a history and physical examination. In evaluating a child with a suspected cervical spine injury, radiography may be supplemented with CT or MRI. Definitive management of pediatric cervical spine trauma must be adapted to the distinctive anatomy and growth potential of the patient. As with all injuries, prevention is necessary to reduce the incidence of trauma to the pediatric spine.

          • Subspecialty:
          • Pediatric Orthopaedics

          • Trauma

          • Spine

        Pilon Fractures: Advances in Surgical Management

        Pilon fractures are challenging to manage because of the complexity of the injury pattern and the risk of significant complications. Variables such as fracture pattern, soft-tissue injury, and preexisting patient factors can lead to unpredictable outcomes. Avoiding complications associated with the soft-tissue envelope is paramount to optimizing outcomes. In persons with soft-tissue compromise, the use of temporary external fixation and staged management is helpful in reducing further injury and complications. Evidence in support of new surgical approaches and minimally invasive techniques is incomplete. Soft-tissue management, such as negative-pressure dressings, may be helpful in preventing complications.

            • Subspecialty:
            • Trauma

            • Foot and Ankle

          Galeazzi Fracture

          Galeazzi fracture is a fracture of the radial diaphysis with disruption at the distal radioulnar joint (DRUJ). Typically, the mechanism of injury is forceful axial loading and torsion of the forearm. Diagnosis is established on radiographic evaluation. Underdiagnosis is common because disruption of the ligamentous restraints of the DRUJ may be overlooked. Nonsurgical management with anatomic reduction and immobilization in a long-arm cast has been successful in children. In adults, nonsurgical treatment typically fails because of deforming forces acting on the distal radius and DRUJ. Open reduction and internal fixation is the preferred surgical option. Anatomic reduction and rigid fixation should be followed by intraoperative assessment of the DRUJ. Further intraoperative interventions are based on the reducibility and postreduction stability of the DRUJ. Misdiagnosis or inadequate management of Galeazzi fracture may result in disabling complications, such as DRUJ instability, malunion, limited forearm range of motion, chronic wrist pain, and osteoarthritis.

              • Subspecialty:
              • Hand and Wrist

              • Trauma

            The Impact of Complementary and Alternative Treatment Modalities on the Care of Orthopaedic Patients

            The use of complementary and alternative medicine is widespread and popular with the lay public. Although prevalence of use varies among specific patient populations, complementary and alternative medicine, in particular herbal remedies, are widely marketed and used by orthopaedic patients. Herbal supplements can have a negative impact on the perioperative period and may interact with conventional medicines used to manage chronic conditions. Physician-patient communication often does not include the subject of alternative medicines, leading to underreporting of use. Orthopaedic surgeons should adopt methods to routinely elicit from their patients the use of complementary and alternative medicine and should monitor and counsel patients on potential side effects and drug-herb interactions. Preoperative instructions should include cessation of the use of herbal supplements.

                • Subspecialty:
                • Pain Management

                • Basic Science

                • Clinical Practice Improvement