Long-term results after Russe bone-grafting: the effect of malunion of the scaphoid.
Twenty-five patients had Russe anterior corticocancellous bone-grafting between 1973 and 1984 for twenty-six symptomatic established non-unions of the scaphoid. The mean duration of follow-up was eleven years (range, seven to eighteen years). Twenty-one (81 per cent) of the twenty-six scaphoid bones united. We developed two rating scales to evaluate the results of the operation. One scale, based on objective findings, included the radiographic appearance of the wrist, the range of motion, and strength; the other scale, based on subjective findings, comprised function, pain, perception of a decrease in performance because of limitation of motion or strength, and satisfaction. These scales were used to compare the objective and subjective results in patients who had a malunion of the scaphoid in which the lateral intrascaphoid angle was more than 45 degrees convex dorsally between the proximal and distal poles (a so-called flexion or humpback deformity, which results in extension of the proximal fragment of the scaphoid at the radiocarpal joint) with the results in patients who had no such deformity. The lateral intrascaphoid angle was more than 45 degrees in thirteen (50 per cent) of the twenty-six wrists. Although the difference in the objective results between the wrists that had a malunion and those that did not have a malunion was highly significant (p = 0.001), there was no significant difference in the subjective results between the two groups, including satisfaction of the patient (p = 0.39). Twenty-three patients (92 per cent) returned to full-time employment and twenty-two (88 per cent), to sports activities. Twenty-three patients (92 per cent) reported that they had pronounced relief of pain and that the procedure had improved their quality of life. The presence of this deformity of the scaphoid after bone-grafting for a symptomatic non-union was not predictive of a poor long-term subjective outcome.
Jiranek, WA; Ruby, LK; Millender, LB; Bankoff, MS; Newberg, AH
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