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Revista de la Asociación Argentina de Ortopedia y Traumatología

versión On-line ISSN 1852-7434


LUGONES, Alfonso et al. Treatment and associated injuries in ipsilateral femoral and tibial fractures: "Floating knee". Rev. Asoc. Argent. Ortop. Traumatol. [online]. 2010, vol.75, n.4, pp.370-375. ISSN 1852-7434.

Background: Floating knee is a term used for ipsilateral tibial and femoral fractures, associated to many life-threatening complications. We report our experience in the treatment of these injuries over a period of six years, reviewing and comparing the results with those published in the literature. Methods: This is a retrospective, descriptive and observational study, done from January 2003 to July 2009 including 16 patients: 11 males (68.7%) and 5 females (31.3%). The average age was 38.5 years (20 - 70 years). We used the Fraser classification for floating knee, and evaluated: range of motion, the material used in surgery, associated injuries, healing time, complications and additional surgeries. Results: Twelve of 16 patients (75%) had associated injuries. Twelve patients (75%) received early definitive treatment while in 4 (25%) damage was controlled. The average healing time of both bones was 6 months. Eight patients (50%) required additional surgeries. Conclusions: Floating knee is often the result of poly-trauma. The different published series report an average of 50 to 62% associated injuries. Damage control with external fixation is an excellent option. The best treatment for these fractures is early and definite stabilization, which allows for early mobilization, reduces systemic problems in polytrauma, and the complications associated with a long stay in bed.

Palabras clave : Floating knee; Treatment; Associated injuries.

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