After arthroplasty, arthrodesis of the ankle joint is the most common method to treat advanced ankle osteoarthritis. The goal of the study was to assess the subjective and objective outcomes in 2 different types of fixation for ankle joint arthrodesis.
We retrospectively assessed 47 patients who had undergone ankle joint arthrodesis with fixation either via an Ilizarov apparatus (group 1) (n = 21) or cannulated screws (group 2) (n = 26). The outcomes were measured by: (1) the quantity of analgesics administered, (2) the American Orthopaedic Foot and Ankle Society (AOFAS) ankle–hindfoot score, (3) general patient satisfaction, (4) the patients’ decision to undergo the same procedure given another chance, and (5) the necessity of blood transfusion during hospitalization. Data was collected at the last postoperative follow-up visit. The AOFAS scores in group 1 and group 2 patients were 73.9 ± 13 and 72.7 ± 14.3, respectively. In group 1, 17 patients (81%) were very satisfied with the results, while in group 2, 19 patients (73%) were very satisfied with the results (p = .043). Two group 1 patients (10%) and four group 2 patients (15.3%) reported that they were satisfied with the outcomes (p = .035). Two patients (10%) from group 1 and three patients (11%) from group 2 were fairly satisfied. Seventeen patients (81%) after arthrodesis with Ilizarov fixation and 21 patients (81%) after arthrodesis with internal fixation would choose the same procedure given the opportunity to choose again. In group 1 there were no patients who required blood transfusion; in group 2 one patient (4%) required blood transfusion; the difference was statistically significant (p = .039). Nineteen group 1 patients (90%) were administered an analgesic preoperatively, while postoperatively only 6 (29%) required analgesics. In group 2, 24 patients (92%) were administered analgesics preoperatively, with 8 (31%) of them still requiring analgesics postoperatively. Ankle arthrodesis patients from both group 1 and group 2 achieved good subjective and objective results of treatment. We noted slightly better results in the Ilizarov apparatus group.
Level of Clinical Evidence
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Published online: April 01, 2022
Financial Disclosures: None reported.
Conflict of Interest: None reported.
The study was approved by the local ethics committee.
© 2022 by the American College of Foot and Ankle Surgeons. All rights reserved.