Fixation of Lapidus Arthrodesis with a Plantar Interfragmentary Screw and Medial Locking Plate: A Report of 88 Cases

Published:March 28, 2013DOI:


      Lapidus arthrodesis is a powerful procedure that can be used to correct pathologic features within the forefoot or midfoot. Many different methods of fixation for this procedure have been reported. The use of plating constructs has been shown to provide increased stability compared with screw-only constructs. The technique we have described consists of a plantar to dorsal retrograde lag screw across the arthrodesis site, coupled with a low-profile medial locking plate. A total of 88 consecutive patients were treated with this modification of the Lapidus procedure by 2 surgeons and were retrospectively evaluated. All patients followed an early postoperative weightbearing protocol. Patient age, gender, follow-up duration, interval to weightbearing and radiographic fusion, preoperative and postoperative intermetatarsal angle, hardware removal, preoperative and postoperative American Orthopaedic Foot and Ankle Society midfoot scores, and adjunct procedures were analyzed. The mean follow-up period was 16.76 ± 5.9 (range 12 to 36) months, and all healed fusions demonstrated radiographic union at a mean of 51 ± 19.1 (range 40 to 89) days. The patients were treated with weightbearing starting a mean of 10.90 ± 4.1 (range 5 to 28) days postoperatively. Complications included 15 patients (17%) requiring hardware removal, 2 cases (2%) of hallux varus, 6 cases (7%) of radiographic recurrent hallux valgus, and 2 patients (2%) with first metatarsocuneiform nonunion. The results of the present study have demonstrated that plantar lag screw fixation with medial locking plate augmentation for Lapidus arthrodesis allows for early weightbearing with satisfactory outcomes, improved clinical and radiographic alignment, and improved American Orthopaedic Foot and Ankle Society scores.

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