Evaluation of sixty-eight cases of fracture stabilisation by external hybrid fixation and a proposal for hybrid construct classification

Jiménez-Heras, María; Rovesti, Gian Luca; Nocco, Gianluca; Barilli, Massimo; Bogoni, Paolo; Salas-Herreros, Emilio; Armato, Matteo; Collivignarelli, Francesco; Vegni, Federico; Rodríguez-Quiros, Jesus
October 2014
BMC Veterinary Research;10/1/2014, Vol. 10 Issue 1, p1
Academic Journal
Background Hybrid external fixation (HEF) is an emerging technique for fracture stabilization in veterinary orthopedics, but its use has been reported in few papers in the veterinary literature. The linear and circular elements that form hybrid fixators can be connected in a very high number of combinations, and for this reason just referring to HEF without any classification is often misleading about the actual frame structure. The aim of this study was to retrospectively evaluate fracture stabilization by HEF in 58 client-owned dogs and 8 cats, and to extend the already existing classification for hybrid constructs to include all frame configurations used in this study and potentially applicable in clinical settings. Animal signalment, fracture classification, surgical procedure and frame configuration were recorded. Complications, radiographic, functional and cosmetic results were evaluated at the time of fixator removal. Results Sixty-eight fractures in 58 dogs and eight cats were evaluated. Two dogs had bilateral fractures. Fifty-one percent were radio-ulna, 34% tibial, 9% humeral, 3% femoral and 3% scapular fractures. One ring combined with one or two linear elements was the most widely employed configuration in this case series. Radiographic results at the time of frame removal were excellent in 59% of the cases, good in 38% and fair in 3%, while functional and cosmetic results were excellent in 69% of the cases, good in 27% and fair in 4%. Conclusions HEF is a useful option for fracture treatment in dogs and cats, particularly for peri and juxtaarticular fractures. It can be applied with a minimally invasive approach, allows adjustments during the postoperative period and is a versatile system because of the large variety of combinations that can fit with the specific fracture features. The classification used enables to determine the number of linear and circular elements used in the frame.


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