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Current Issue - November 2019, Volume 13, Issue No. 3

Official Journal of Malaysian Orthopaedic Association and ASEAN Orthopaedic Association

Surgical Fixation and Inter-phalangeal Arthrodesis of Symptomatic Non-union of Fracture of a Lesser Toe Distal Phalanx: A Case Report


Distal phalanx fractures of the toes are common injuries. The majority of them are treated conservatively with good outcome. We present the case of a painful non-union fracture of the distal phalanx of the 4th toe in a 60-year-old female patient with symphalangism of the 4th and 5th toes. She underwent surgical fixation of the fracture with concomitant inter-phalangeal joint (IPJ) arthrodesis for better stability. A transverse dorsal incision was made just distal to the IPJ to allow preparation of both the fracture site and IPJ. Fibrous tissue at the fracture non-union site was removed and the opposing surfaces drilled with a 0.88mm Kwire. Cartilaginous tissue at the IPJ was removed and similarly drilled with the 0.88mm K-wire. Stabilisation was achieved with a percutaneous headless compression screw. Radiographic union was achieved and the patient had resolution of symptoms 16 weeks after the surgery. The patient continued to be symptom-free at one year follow-up. This is the first case report of a surgically treated symptomatic non-union of distal phalanx fracture of a lesser toe in the literature.

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The Malaysian Orthopaedic Journal is a peer-reviewed journal that is published three times a year in both print and electronic online version. The purpose of this journal is to publish original research studies, evaluation of current practices and case reports in various subspecialties of orthopaedics and traumatology, as well as associated fields like basic science, biomedical engineering, rehabilitation medicine and nursing.

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