March 30th, 2018 , Arthroplasty Today

Early femoral condyle insufficiency fractures after total knee arthroplasty: treatment with delayed surgery and femoral component revision (Abstract)

Authors: Vestermark GL, Odum SM, Springer BD


Periprosthetic fracture following total knee arthroplasty (TKA) is usually associated with a traumatic event and typically treated with fracture fixation techniques. However, we report on a series of patients with early atraumatic condyle fractures that occurred as a result of insufficiency of the unloaded preoperative femoral condyle treated with delayed reconstruction.


We retrospectively reviewed a series of 7 patients who sustained femoral condyle fractures following TKA and evaluated risk factors for insufficiency.


There were 6 females and 1 male with an average age of 65.5 (range, 63-75) years and an average body mass index of 29.4 (range, 27-32). Fracture occurred on average 24.9 days from the index surgery and secondary to a low energy mechanism. Five patients had valgus alignment (mean, 15.2°) preoperatively and sustained fracture of the unloaded medial femoral condyle. Two patients had varus alignment (mean, 7.0°) preoperatively and both fractured the unloaded lateral condyle. One patient underwent early intervention requiring distal femoral replacement secondary to femoral bone loss. The remaining 6 patients underwent delayed surgery for an average of 6 weeks to allow for fracture healing followed by femoral component revision. At last follow-up (average, 48.5 months), 1 patient required a tibial component revision; however, no revision of the femoral component was required.


Early femoral condyle insufficiency fractures following TKA may be a risk in females with poor bone quality and preoperative valgus alignment. Delayed surgery and femoral component revision is a treatment strategy that prevented the need for other tertiary reconstruction.

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