Baylor University Medical Center, Orthopaedic Associates of Dallas, Texas 75246, USA.
Twelve patients (12 feet) underwent salvage first metatarsalphalangeal (MTP) arthrodesis with structural, interposition autologous iliac crest bone graft (ICBG). Eight patients had a bony defect secondary to failed first MTP joint implant arthroplasties, two had avascular necrosis (AVN) after failed bunion surgery, one had a nonunion of an attempted arthrodesis for failed bunion surgery, and one had been treated for osteomyelitis after cheilectomy. Eleven of the cases had a single dorsal plate secured by screws and one case had two plates, one dorsal and one medial. A plate, crossed screw(s) and/or K-wire combination were chosen in four cases. Indications included first MTP joint pain, metatarsalgia, intractable plantar keratoses (IPK), as well as a functionally and cosmetically short first ray refractory to non surgical management. Average preoperative shortening was 8.5 mm (range 5-17). Clinical arthrodesis was achieved after an average of 12 weeks (range 4-20). Radiographic arthrodesis was achieved in eleven of twelve feet at an average of 15 weeks (range 8-28), with one pseudoarthrosis. AOFAS forefoot clinical rating score averaged 70 points (max 90 after first MTP arthrodesis) at an average follow-up of 22 months (range 5-70). Sesamoiditis, prominent hardware and scar sensitivity were prevalent complaints in four patients postoperatively. Two cases required flap coverage for skin necrosis. Relief of metatarsalgia, good hallux alignment as well as improved patient satisfaction and function were achieved in all cases. There was no symptomatic progression of interphalangeal degenerative change postoperatively.