Two-component implant more effective than K-wire fixation for hammertoe correction

By Monica Jaramillo

LONG BEACH, Calif. —  A modular two-component implant was found to be more effective both clinically and radiographically compared with standard K-wire fixation for hammertoe correction, pain reduction, quality of life improvement and ambulatory activity, according to data presented at the American Orthopaedic Foot & Ankle Society Annual Meeting.

According to Charles Zelen, DPM, radiographic union was observed in 83% of patients who received the modular two-component implant, compared with only 14% of patients who received K-wires.

“Why did the nonunion occur with the K-wires? Lack of compression, lack of rotational stability and thermal necrosis,” Zelen said.

Zelen and colleagues performed a prospective, randomized, comparative effectiveness trial to analyze 58 patients’ outcomes after undergoing two different procedures to correct hammertoes with arthrodesis of the proximal interphalangeal joint. Group one comprised 29 patients who were treated with standard arthrodesis including PIP joint resection followed by percutaneous stabilization using K-wire, and group two comprised 29 patients who underwent treatment with a unique modular two-component implant. Follow-up occurred at 1, 3 and 6 weeks and at 3 months and 6 months. The researchers recorded medication use and adverse events.


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