Mechanical Comparison of Two Types of Fixation for Ludloff Oblique First Metatarsal Osteotomy


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Abstract

The Ludloff oblique metatarsal osteotomy is an effective method to correct hallux valgus deformity, although a number of problems have been associated with it, including inherent instability, delayed union, dorsal malunion, and fixation failure. The purpose of the present study was to compare the mechanical characteristics of fixation of the Ludloff osteotomy in 20 identical synthetic bone models, 10 fixated using 2 screws (group I) and 10 fixated using 2 screws augmented with a mini locking plate (group II). Each specimen was loaded to failure, and the mean average load to failure, stiffness, and absorbed energy to failure were compared using unpaired Student’s t test. The mean average stiffness of the Ludloff osteotomy fixed with 2 screws (group I) and with the supplementary mini locking plate (group II) was 172.7 ± 31.7 N/mm and 193.3 ± 39 N/mm, respectively (p = .21). The mean average load to failure for groups I and II was 278.4 ± 64.4 N and 356.2 ± 77.9 N, respectively (p = .025). The mean average energy absorbed before failure for groups I and II was 506.7 ± 206.4 Nmm and 769.8 ± 339.4 Nmm, respectively (p = .05). The use of a medially applied supplementary mini locking plate offers a simple and effective method to improve the mechanical stability of the Ludloff oblique osteotomy.Level of Clinical Evidence: 5

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