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The Journal of Bone & Joint Surgery British Volume
Vol. 93-B, Issue 2 | Pages 245 - 250
1 Feb 2011
Wilson J Bajwa A Kamath V Rangan A

Compression and absolute stability are important in the management of intra-articular fractures. We compared tension band wiring with plate fixation for the treatment of fractures of the olecranon by measuring compression within the fracture. Identical transverse fractures were created in models of the ulna. Tension band wires were applied to ten fractures and ten were fixed with Acumed plates. Compression was measured using a Tekscan force transducer within the fracture gap. Dynamic testing was carried out by reproducing cyclical contraction of the triceps of 20 N and of the brachialis of 10 N. Both methods were tested on each sample. Paired t-tests compared overall compression and compression at the articular side of the fracture.

The mean compression for plating was 819 N (sd 602, 95% confidence interval (CI)) and for tension band wiring was 77 N (sd 19, 95% CI) (p = 0.039). The mean compression on the articular side of the fracture for plating was 343 N (sd 276, 95% CI) and for tension band wiring was 1 N (sd 2, 95% CI) (p = 0.038).

During simulated movements, the mean compression was reduced in both groups, with tension band wiring at −14 N (sd 7) and for plating −173 N (sd 32). No increase in compression on the articular side was detected in the tension band wiring group.

Pre-contoured plates provide significantly greater compression than tension bands in the treatment of transverse fractures of the olecranon, both over the whole fracture and specifically at the articular side of the fracture. In tension band wiring the overall compression was reduced and articular compression remained negligible during simulated contraction of the triceps, challenging the tension band principle.

The Journal of Bone & Joint Surgery British Volume
Vol. 87-B, Issue 9 | Pages 1256 - 1258
1 Sep 2005
Al-Maiyah M Hill D Bajwa A Slater S Patil P Port A Gregg PJ

We have investigated the contaminating bacteria in primary hip arthroplasty and their sensitivity to the prophylactic antibiotics currently in use. Impressions (627) of the gloved hands of the surgical team in 50 total hip arthroplasties were obtained on blood agar. The gloves were changed after draping, at intervals of 20 minutes thereafter, and before using cement. Changes were also undertaken whenever a visible puncture was detected. The culture plates were incubated at 37°C for 48 hours. Isolates were identified and tested for sensitivity to flucloxacillin, which is a recognised indicator of sensitivity to cefuroxime. They were also tested against other agents depending upon their appearance on Gram staining.

We found contamination in 57 (9%) impressions and 106 bacterial isolates. Coagulase-negative staphylococci were seen most frequently (68.9%), but we also isolated Micrococcus (12.3%), diphtheroids (9.4%), Staphylococcus aureus (6.6%) and Escherichia coli (0.9%). Of the coagulase-negative staphylococci, only 52.1% were sensitive to flucloxacillin and therefore to cefuroxime. We believe that it is now appropriate to review the relevance of prophylaxis with cefuroxime and to consider the use of other agents.

The Journal of Bone & Joint Surgery British Volume
Vol. 87-B, Issue 4 | Pages 556 - 559
1 Apr 2005
Al-Maiyah M Bajwa A Finn P Mackenney P Hill D Port A Gregg PJ

We conducted a randomised, controlled trial to determine whether changing gloves at specified intervals can reduce the incidence of glove perforation and contamination in total hip arthroplasty. A total of 50 patients were included in the study. In the study group (25 patients), gloves were changed at 20-minute intervals or prior to cementation. In the control group (25 patients), gloves were changed prior to cementation. In addition, gloves were changed in both groups whenever there was a visible puncture. Only outer gloves were investigated.

Contamination was tested by impression of gloved fingers on blood agar and culture plates were subsequently incubated at 37°C for 48 hours. The number of colonies and types of organisms were recorded. Glove perforation was assessed using the water test. The incidence of perforation and contamination was significantly lower in the study group compared with the control group. Changing gloves at regular intervals is an effective way to decrease the incidence of glove perforation and bacterial contamination during total hip arthroplasty.