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Clinical and Radiographic Outcome of Revision Surgery for Failed Triple Arthrodesis

Foot Ankle Int. 1997 Aug;18(8):489-99.
Haddad SL, Myerson MS, Pell RF 4th, Schon LC.


Between 1987 and 1994, we treated 33 patients with surgical revision for failed triple arthrodesis, 28 (29 feet) of whom returned for final examination (mean, 4.4 years; range, 2-7 years). The average age of these 16 women and 12 men was 46 years (range, 14-69 years). Before the revision procedure, patients had undergone nonoperative therapies for an average of 3.7 years (range, 0.5-12 years) and an average of three foot operations (range, 1-6 operations) after the primary triple arthrodesis. All patients were managed with rigid internal fixation via cannulated screws and power staples. Calcaneal osteotomy and/or revision of the transverse tarsal arthrodesis via appropriate saw cuts and bone wedges were used. Iliac crest bone graft was added, when a bone block arthrodesis was required, for those patients with nonunion or ankle impingement. Arthrodesis was achieved in all 29 feet, although 4 patients (4 feet) (14%) required additional procedures for malunion (2 patients), deformity recurrence (1 patient), deep infection (1 patient), and skin graft (1 patient). Comparison of the average pre- (retrospective) and postoperative American Orthopaedic Foot and Ankle Society 94-point hindfoot and ankle scores showed a significant improvement: 31 points (range, 13-61 points) versus 59 points (range, 24-91 points), respectively (P < 0.05). On a scale of 0 to 10 points, average patient satisfaction was 7.8 points (range, 2-10 points). This study demonstrated a satisfactory improvement in patient outcome after surgical correction of failed triple arthrodesis. We conclude that such a revision, although complex, may be attempted to establish a plantigrade foot free of infection and able to wear shoes without and orthosis or brace.

Copyright © 1997 (Foot Ankle Int. Sep;18(9):580-585) by the American Orthopaedic Foot and Ankle Society, Inc., originally published in Foot & Ankle International, and reproduced here with permission.