Limb salvage treatment for Gollop–Wolfgang complex (femoral bifurcation, complete tibial hemimelia, and hand ectrodactyly)

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Abstract

We reported the findings from three patients with Gollop–Wolfgang complex and demonstrated the results of five limb salvage treatments for this condition. All three femoral bifurcations were accompanied by ipsilateral complete tibial hemimelia. Two patients showed contralateral complete or partial tibial hemimelia, and one patient had hand ectrodactyly. The five limb salvage treatments included resection of the anteromedial bifurcated femur in three limbs, foot centralization in five limbs, tibiofibular fusion in one limb with partial tibial hemimelia, fibular transfer (Brown’s procedure) in three limbs with complete tibial hemimelia, and callus distraction lengthening in one limb. The duration from the first operation to the final follow-up ranged from 3.5 to 5.4 years. None of the three knees treated by fibular transfer achieved a successful functional result, but all of the knees were ultimately able to withstand weight bearing. Early knee disarticulation and resection of the protruded bifurcated femur, followed by fitting of a modern prosthesis is likely to be the best treatment for patients with Gollop–Wolfgang syndrome. We note that limb salvage treatment is an alternative in patients who opt to retain their feet and refuse amputation.

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