Early Clinical and Radiographic Outcomes of Trabecular Metal Total Ankle Replacement Using a Transfibular Approach

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Abstract

Background:

In the last 2 decades, total ankle replacement has gained greater acceptance as a treatment option in patients with end-stage ankle osteoarthritis. However, there is a lack of literature on total ankle replacement using a lateral transfibular approach. Therefore, we sought to report early clinical and radiographic results for a patient cohort treated with total ankle replacement using a lateral transfibular approach, performed by a single surgeon.

Methods:

From October 2012 to December 2014, 55 primary total ankle arthroplasties using the Zimmer Trabecular Metal Total Ankle implant were performed in 54 patients (29 male and 25 female; mean age, 67.0 years). Clinical assessment, including pain evaluation and measurement of ankle range of motion, was conducted preoperatively and at the latest follow-up. Weight-bearing radiographs were used to determine angular alignment of the tibial and talar components and to analyze the bone-implant interface. Intraoperative and postoperative complications, revision surgeries, and survivorship were evaluated.

Results:

Implant survival was 93% at 24 months of follow-up. There were 3 revisions of a tibial component due to aseptic loosening. In 10 of the 55 cases, a secondary procedure was performed during follow-up. The mean follow-up duration was 26.6 ± 4.2 months. No delayed union or nonunion was observed for fibular healing. The average visual analog scale (VAS) pain score decreased significantly, from 7.9 ± 1.3 to 0.8 ± 1.2. The average total range of motion increased significantly, from 22.9° ± 12.7° to 40.2° ± 11.8°.

Conclusions:

Early results of total ankle replacement using the Zimmer trabecular metal implant and the lateral transfibular approach demonstrated improved patient-reported outcomes and increased ankle motion at a minimum follow-up of 2 years. In the 55 consecutive cases, the fibular osteotomy required for access to the ankle healed without complications. Painful early loosening due to lack of osseous ingrowth required revision in 3 of 55 cases.

Level of Evidence:

Therapeutic Level IV. See Instructions for Authors for a complete description of levels of evidence.

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