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Volume 105-B, Issue SUPP_4 March 2023 The Welsh Orthopaedic Society (WOS) Meeting, Newport, Wales, 26–27 May 2022.

General Orthopaedics
Full Access
A. F. Kinghorn G. Whatling J. Bowd C. Wilson C. Holt

This study aimed to examine the effect of high tibial osteotomy (HTO) on the ankle and subtalar joints via analysis of static radiographic alignment. We hypothesised that surgical alteration of the alignment of the proximal tibia would result in compensatory distal changes.

35 patients recruited as part of the wider Biomechanics and Bioengineering Centre Versus Arthritis HTO study between 2011 and 2018 had pre- and postoperative full-length weightbearing radiographs taken of their lower limbs. In addition to standard alignment measures of the limb and knee (mechanical tibiofemoral angle, Mikulicz point, medial proximal tibial angle), additional measures were taken of the ankle/subtalar joints (lateral distal tibial angle, ground-talus angle, joint line convergence angle of the ankle) as well as a novel measure of stance width. Results were compared using a paired T-test and Pearson's correlation coefficient.

Following HTO, there was a significant (5.4°) change in subtalar alignment. Ground-talus angle appeared related both to the level of malalignment preoperatively and the magnitude of the alignment change caused by the HTO surgery; suggesting subtalar positioning as a key adaptive mechanism. In addition to compensatory changes within the subtalar joints, the patients on average had a 31% wider stance following HTO. These two mechanisms do not appear to be correlated but the morphology of the tibial plafond may influence which compensatory mechanisms are employed by different subgroups of HTO patients.

These findings are of vital importance in clinical practice both to anticipate potential changes to the ankle and subtalar joints following HTO but it could also open up wider indications for HTO in the treatment of ankle malalignment and osteoarthritis.

N. Mathai R. Guro A. Chandratreya R. Kotwal

There has been a significant increase in the demand for arthroplasty as a result of the Covid 19 pandemic and lack of beds on the green pathway. The average length of in-hospital stay following knee replacements has been successfully reduced over the years following introduction and adoption of enhanced recovery protocols. Day case arthroplasty has the potential to be efficient as well as cost-effective. We present our day case pathway for elective knee arthroplasty and early results of its adoption at a district general hospital.

Our pathway was developed through a multidisciplinary input from surgeons, anaesthetists, physiotherapists, nursing staff, administrative staff, surgical care practitioners and pharmacists. Inclusion criteria were defined to identify patients suitable for cay case arthroplasty. Results of 32 patients who underwent day case partial and total knee replacement at our institution between 2018 to 2022 are presented.

31 out of 32 (97%) were discharged safely on the day of surgery. Patients were discharged at a mean of 7 hours following surgery. There were no re-admissions following discharge. There were no surgical complications at a mean follow-up of 2 years. Patient feedback revealed high levels of satisfaction and that they would recommend the pathway to others. Cost analysis revealed savings towards bed costs.

Our early results demonstrate day case knee arthroplasty to be safe and cost effective. With limited resources to tackle the enormous backlog of arthroplasty, it offers the potential to make theatre utilization efficient.

K.D. Roy P. Joshi I. Ali P. Shenoy A. Syed D. Barlow I. Malek Y. Joshi

Classifying trochlear dysplasia (TD) is useful to determine the treatment options for patients suffering from patellofemoral instability (PFI). There is no consensus on which classification system is more reliable and reproducible for this purpose to guide clinicians in order to treat PFI. There are also concerns about validity of the Dejour classification (DJC), which is the most widely used classification for TD, having only a fair reliability score.

The Oswestry-Bristol classification (OBC) is a recently proposed system of classification of TD and the authors report a fair-to-good interobserver agreement and good-to-excellent intra-observer agreement in the assessment of TD. The aim of this study was to compare the reliability and reproducibility of these two classifications.

6 assessors (4 consultants and 2 registrars) independently evaluated 100 magnetic resonance axial images of the patella-femoral joint for TD and classified them according to OBC and DJC. These assessments were again repeated by all raters after 4 weeks. The inter and intra-observer reliability scores were calculated using Cohen's kappa and Cronbach's alpha.

Both classifications showed good to excellent interobserver reliability with high alpha scores. The OBC classification showed a substantial intra-observer agreement (mean kappa 0.628)[p<0.005] whereas the DJC showed a moderate agreement (mean kappa 0.572) [p<0.005]. There was no significant difference in the kappa values when comparing the assessments by consultants to those by registrars, in either classification systems.

This large study from a non-founding institute shows both classification systems to be reliable for classifying TD based on magnetic resonance axial images of the patella-femoral joint, with the simple to use OBC having a higher intra-observer reliability score compared to the DJC.

V. Joseph J. Boktor K.D. Roy P. Lewis

The significance of ring-fencing orthopaedic beds and protected elective sites have recently been highlighted by the British Orthopaedic Association & Royal College of Surgeons. During the pandemic many such elective setups were established with various degrees of success. This study aimed to compare the functioning and efficiency of a Orthopaedic Protected Elective Surgical Unit (PESU) instituted during the pandemic with the pre-pandemic elective service at our hospital (Pre-Pandemic ward or PPW).

We retrospectively collected data of all patients who underwent elective Orthopaedic procedures in a protected elective unit during the pandemic (March 2020 – July 2020) and a similar cohort of patients operated via the routine elective service immediately prior to the pandemic (October 2019 – February 2020). Various parameters were compared and analysed. To minimise the effect of confounding factors a secondary analysis was undertaken comparing total hip replacements (THR) by a single surgeon via PESU (PESU-THR) and PPW (PPW-THR) over 5 months each from March-July 2021 and March-July 2019 respectively.

A total of 192 cases were listed on PESU during the studied period whereas this number was 339 for PPW. However more than half (52%) of those listed for a surgery on PPW were cancelled and only 162 cases (48%) were actually performed. PESU had a significantly better conversion rate with only 12.5% being cancelled and 168 (87.5%) cases performed. 49% (87 out of 177) of the cases cancelled on PPW were due to a ‘bed unavailability’. A further 17% (30/177) and 16% (28/177) were cancelled due to ‘emergency case prioritisation’ and ‘patient deemed unfit’ respectively. In contrast only 3 out of the 24 patients cancelled on PESU were due to bed unavailability and the main reason for cancellation here was ‘patient deemed unfit’ (9/24). Single surgeon THR, showed similar demographic features for the 25 patients on PESU and 37 patients on PPW. The average age for these patients was 63 on PESU and 69 on PPW whereas the BMI was 33 and 30 respectively. The patients on PESU also demonstrated a decrease in length of hospital stay with an average of 3 days in comparison to 4.8 days for those admitted to PPW. PROMS scores were comparable at 6 weeks with an average improvement of 16.4/48 in the PESU-THR cohort and of 18.8/48 in the PPW-THR cohort. There were no readmissions or revisions recorded in the PESU-THR cohort while the PPW-THR cohort had 1 readmission and revision.

Our study shows how a small ring fenced Orthopaedic elective unit in a district general hospital, even during a global pandemic, can function more efficiently than a routine elective facility with many shared services.

A. Poacher G. Ramage J. Froud C. Carpenter


There is little evidence surrounding the clinical implications of a diagnosis of IIa hip dysplasia with no consensus as to its efficacy as a predictor pathological dysplasia or treatment. Therefore, we evaluated the importance of categorising 2a hip dysplasia in to 2a- and 2a+ to better understand the clinical outcomes of each.


A 9-year retrospective cohort study of patients with a diagnosis of type IIa hip dysplasia between 2011 – 2020 (n=341) in our centre. Ultrasound scans were graded using Graf's classification, assessment of management and DDH progression was completed through prospective data collection by the authors.

G. Ramage A. Poacher M. Ramsden J. Lewis A. Robertson C. Wilson


Virtual fracture clinics (VFC's) aim to reduce the number of outpatient appointments while improving the clinical effectiveness and patients experience through standardisation of treatment pathways. With 4.6% of ED admissions due to trauma the VFC prevents unnecessary face to face appointments providing a cost savings benefit to the NHS.


This project demonstrates the importance of efficient VFC process in reducing the burden on the fracture clinics. We completed preformed a retrospective cross-sectional study, analysing two cycles in May (n=305) and September (n=332) 2021. We reviewed all VFC referrals during this time assessing the quality of the referral, if they went on to require a face to face follow up and who the referring health care professional was. Following the cycle in May we provided ongoing education to A&E staff before re-auditing in September.

I. Hughes J. May C. Carpenter


Chronic recurrent multifocal osteomyelitis (CRMO) is a rare condition characterised by bony pain and swelling which may be initially mistaken for bacterial osteomyelitis. The episodic course of the disease may confound the diagnosis and potentially be mistaken for a partial response to antimicrobial therapy. It is an orphan disease and consequently results in many unclear aspects of diagnosis, treatment and follow up for patients. The aim of this study is to evaluate a national tertiary centre's experience with the clinical condition and present one of the largest cohorts to date, emphasizing the vast array of clinical spectrum, course and response to treatment.


We retrospectively evaluated all children identified with CRMO from the period 2000–2022 within Wales. Demographic data and clinical parameters were selectively identified through the utilisation of a national clinical platform (Welsh Clinical Portal). The diagnosis was based on clinical findings, radiological images, histopathological and microbiological studies

R Agarwal K Mohanty M Gibby


Prospective study to compare patient reported outcome measures (PROM) for sacroiliac joint (SIJ) fusion using HA-coated screw (HACS) vs triangular titanium dowel (TTD). First study of its kind in English literature.


40 patients underwent percutaneous SIJ stabilisation using HACS and TTD was used in 70 patients. Patients were followed up closely and outcome scores were collected prospectively. PROMs were collected preoperatively and 12 months after surgery. Short Form (SF)-36, Oswestry Disability Index, EuroQol-5D-5L and Majeed Pelvic Scores were collected. Shapiro-wilk test was used to determine normality of data. Mann-whitney U test was used to compared non-parametric data and Independent sample T test for parametric data.

A. Zahid R. Mohammed

Anterior cervical discectomy and fusion (ACDF) is a well-established spinal operation for cervical disc degeneration disease with neurological compromise. The procedure involves an anterior approach to the cervical spine with discectomy to relieve the pressure on the impinged spinal cord to slow disease progression. The prosthetic cage replaces the disc and can be inserted stand-alone or with an anterior plate that provides additional stability. The literature demonstrates that the cage-alone (CA) is given preference over the cage-plate (CP) technique due to better clinical outcomes, reduced operation time and resultant morbidity. This retrospective case-controlled study compared CA versus CP fixation used in single and multilevel anterior cervical discectomy and fusion for myelopathy in a tertiary centre in Wales.

A retrospective clinico-radiological analysis was undertaken, following ACDF procedures over seven years in a single tertiary centre. Inclusion criteria were patients over 18 years of age with cervical myelopathy who had at least six-month follow-up data. SPSS was used to identify any statistically significant difference between both groups. The data were analysed to evaluate the consistency of our findings in comparison to published literature.

Eighty-six patients formed the study cohort; 28 [33%] underwent ACDF with CA and 58 [67%] with CP. The patient demographics were similar in both groups, and fusion was observed in all individuals. There was no statistical difference between the two constructs when assessing subsidence, clinical complication (dysphagia, dysphonia, infection), radiological parameters and reoperations. However, a more significant percentage [43% v 61%] of patients improved their cervical lordosis angle with CP treatment. Furthermore, the study yielded that surgery to upper cervical levels results in a higher incidence of dysphagia [65% v 35%]. Finally, bony growth across the cage was observed on X-ray in 12[43%] patients, a unique finding not mentioned in the literature previously.

Our study demonstrates no overall difference between the two groups, and we recommend careful consideration of individual patient factors when deciding what construct to choose.

J. Brock U. Jayaraju R. Trickett

There is no consensus for the appropriate surgical management of chronic ulnar collateral ligament (UCL) injuries of the thumb.

A systematic review of Pubmed, MEDLINE, EMBASE and ePub Ahead of Print was performed in accordance with Preferred Reporting of Items in Systematic Review and Meta-analysis (PRISMA) guidelines and formal protocol registered with PROSPERO.

Two authors collated data from 10 studies that met strict inclusion criteria, using various surgical techniques in 131 thumbs. Results were heterogenous and metanalysis of results not possible. These data were, therefore, qualitatively assessed and synthesised. Bias was assessed using the ROBINS-I tool.

Direct repair, reconstruction with free tendon or bone-tissue-bone grafts and arthrodesis all demonstrated favourable outcomes with Patient Reported Outcome Measures. Direct repair can be safely performed more than two months following injury, with a positive mean Disabilities of the Arm, Shoulder and Hand (DASH) score of 13.5 despite evidence of radiographic osteoarthritis. Arthrodesis should be considered in heavy manual laborers or those at risk of osteoarthritis as it provides significant reduction in pain (Mean Visual Analogue Score of 1.2) when compared to other methods. Free tendon grafting has been criticised for failure rates and poor functional grip strength, however collated analysis of 97 patients found a single graft rupture and mean grip strength of 97% (of the contralateral thumb). Bone-tissue-bone grafting was the least effective method across all outcome measures.

Studies included were at high risk of bias, however, it can be concluded that delayed direct repair can be performed safely, while arthrodesis may benefit certain patient subgroups. New findings suggest poor efficacy of bone-tissue-bone grafts, but that free tendon grafting with palmaris longus are in fact safe with good restoration of grip strength. The optimal graft and configuration are yet to be determined for reconstructive methods.

S. Mehta R. Reddy D. Nair U. Mahajan T. Madhusudhan A. Vedamurthy


Mode of non-operative management of thoracolumbar spine fracture continues to remain controversial with the most common modality hinging on bracing. TLSO is the device with a relative extension locked position, and many authors suggest they may have a role in the healing process, diminishing the load transferred via the anterior column, limiting segmental motion, and helping in pain control. However, several studies have shown prolonged use of brace may lead to skin breakdown, diminished pulmonary capacity, weakness of paraspinal musculature with no difference in pain and functional outcomes between patients treated with or without brace.


To identify number of spinal braces used for spinal injury and cost implications (in a DGH), to identify the impact on length of stay, to ascertain patient compliance and quality of patient information provided for brace usage, reflect whether we need to change our practice on TLSO brace use.

H. Dewhurst J. Boktor B. Szomolay P. Lewis


In recent years, ‘Get It Right First Time (GIRFT)’ have advocated cemented replacements in femoral part of Total hip arthroplasty (THA) especially in older patients. However, many studies were unable to show any difference in outcomes and although cemented prostheses may be associated with better short-term pain outcomes there is no clear advantage in the longer term. It is not clear when and why to do cemented instead of cementless.


To assess differences in patient reported outcomes in uncemented THAs based on patient demographics in order to decide when cementless THA can be done safely.

S. Rohra A. Sinha M. Kemp U. Rethnam


Dynamic Hip Screw (DHS) is the most frequently used implant in management of intertrochanteric femoral fractures. There is a known statistical relationship between a tip-apex distance (TAD) >25mm and higher rate of implant failure. Our aim was to analyse all DHS procedures performed in our trust from seventeen months and compare their TAD values to the acceptable standard of ≤25mm.


All patients undergoing DHS between April 2020-August 2021 were identified from our theatre system. Additionally, those presenting to hospital with implant failures were included. Patient demographics, date of surgery, fracture classification (AO) and date/mode of failure were recorded. Intraoperative fluoroscopy images were reviewed to calculate TAD, screw location and neck shaft angles by two independent observers.

S. Mehta L. Williams D. Bhaskar


Neck of femur (NoF) fractures have an inherent 6.5% 30-day mortality as per National hip fracture database(2019). Several studies have demonstrated a higher mortality rate in covid positive NoFs but have been unable to demonstrate whether there are risk factors that contribute to the risk of mortality in this patient group or whether COVID is solely responsible for the higher mortality.


To assess risk factors that are concurrently present in a fracture NoF cohort that may contribute to higher mortality in COVID positive patients.

E. Fahey M.F.H. Elsheikh M.S. Davey F. Rowan T.J. Cassidy M.S. Cleary


The COVID-19 pandemic has triggered transformative change in how clinicians interact with their patients. There has been a shift away from face-to-face toward virtual consultations. However, the evidence to support this change in practice is unclear. The aim of this study was to systematically review the evidence base for virtual consultations for orthopaedics.

Materials and Methods

Two independent reviewers performed a literature search based on PRISMA guidelines, utilizing the MEDLINE, EMBASE and Scopus databases. Only studies reporting outcomes following the use of telemedicine for diagnosis, consultation, rehabilitation, and follow-up were included. Outcomes analyzed were: 1) Patient and clinician satisfaction, 2) Clinical outcome measures, and 3) Cost analysis of traditional vs teleconsultation.

V. Khanna P.K. Gupta A. Acharya

Increasing expectations from arthroscopic anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) reconstructions require precise knowledge of technical details such as minimum intra-femoral tunnel graft lengths. A common belief of having ≥20mm of grafts within the femoral tunnel is backed mostly by hearsay rather than scientific proof.

We examined clinico-radiological outcomes in patients with intra-femoral tunnel graft lengths <20 and ≥20mm. Primary outcomes were knee scores at 1-year. Secondarily, graft revascularization was compared using magnetic resonance imaging (MRI). We hypothesized that outcomes would be independent of intra-femoral tunnel graft lengths.

This prospective, single-surgeon, cohort study was conducted at a tertiary care teaching centre between 2015–2018 after obtaining ethical clearances and consents. Eligible arthroscopic ACL reconstruction patients were sequentially divided into 2 groups based on the intra-femoral tunnel graft lengths (A: < 20 mm, n = 27; and B: ≥ 20 mm, n = 25). Exclusions were made for those > 45 years of age, with chondral and/or multi-ligamentous injuries and with systemic pathologies. All patients were postoperatively examined and scored (Lysholm and modified Cincinnati scores) at 3, 6 and 12 months. Graft vascularity was assessed by signal-to-noise quotient ratio (SNQR) using MRI. Statistical significance was set at p<0.05.

Age and sex-matched patients of both groups were followed to 1 year (1 dropout in each). Mean femoral and tibial tunnel diameters (P =0.225 and 0.595) were comparable. Groups A (<20mm) and B (≥20mm) had 27 and 25 patients respectively. At 3 months, 2 group A patients and 1 group B patient had grade 1 Lachman (increased at 12 months to 4 and 3 patients respectively). Pivot shift was negative in all patients. Lysholm scores at 3 and 6 months were comparable (P3= 0.195 and P6= 0.133). At 1 year both groups showed comparable Cincinnati scores. Mean ROM was satisfactory (≥130 degrees) in all but 2 patients of each group (125–130 degrees). MRI scans at 3 months and 1 year observed anatomical tunnels in all without any complications. Femoral tunnel signals in both groups showed a fall from 3–12 months indicating onset of maturation of graft at femoral tunnel.

Our hypothesis, clinical and radiological outcomes would be independent of intra-tunnel graft lengths on the femoral aspect, did therefore prove correct. Intra-femoral tunnel graft lengths of <20 mm did not compromise early clinical and functional outcomes of ACL reconstructions. There seems to be no minimum length of graft within the tunnel below which suboptimal results should be expected.

H. Warder A. Semple D. S. Johnson

A hip fracture represents the extreme end of osteoporosis, placing a significant burden on secondary care, society, and the individual patient. The National Hip Fracture Database (NHFD) reports each hospital's attainment of the BPT with other measures, along with reporting outcomes. There is clearly wide variability in provision of orthogerriatrician (OG) services across the dataset. Unfortunately, despite overwhelming evidence that provision of an OG service is of benefit, it is presently challenging to recruit to this important specialty within the UK.

Publicly available reports from the NHFD were obtained for each of the 177 participating hospitals for 2017. This was matched with information held within the annual NHFD Facilities Audit for the same period, which include hours of OG support for each hospital. This information was combined with a Freedom of Information request made by email to each hospital for further details concerning OG support. The outcome measures used were Length of Stay (LoS), mortality, and return to usual residence. Comparison was made with provision of OG services by use of Pearson's correlation coefficient. In addition, differences in services were compared between the 25% (44) hospitals delivering outcomes at the extremes for each measure.

Attainment of BPT correlated fairly with LoS (−0.48) and to less of a degree with mortality (−0.1) and return home (0.05). Perioperative medical assessment contributed very strongly with BPT attainment (0.75). In turn perioperative medical assessment correlated fairly with LoS (−0.40) and mortality (−0.23) but not return home (0.02). Provision of perioperative medical assessment attainment was correlated fairly with total OG minutes available per new patient (0.22), total OG minutes available per patient per day (0.29) and number of days per week of OG cover (0.34); with no link for number of patients per orthogeriatrician (0.01). Mortality for the best units were associated with 30% more consultant OG time available per patient per day, and 51% more OG time available per patient. Units returning the most patients to their usual residence had little association with OG time, although had 59% fewer patients per OG, the best units had a 19% longer LoS. For all three measures results for the best had on average 0.5 days per week better routine OG access.

There is no doubt that good quality care gives better results for this challenging group of patients. However, the interaction of BPT, other care metrics, level of OG support and patient factors with outcomes is complex. We have found OG time available per patient per day appears to influence particularly LoS and mortality. Options to increase OG time per patient include reducing patient numbers (ensuring community osteoporosis/falls prevention in place, including reducing in-patient falls); increasing OG time across the week (employing greater numbers/spreading availability over 7 days per week); and reducing LoS. A reduction in LoS has the largest effect of increasing OG time, and although it is dependent on OG support, it is only fairly correlated with this and many other factors play a part, which could be addressed in units under pressure.

A.C. Glendenning T. Richards S. Singh A. Khurana


To compare the efficacy of decompression alone (DA) with i) decompression and fusion (DF) and ii) interspinous process device (IPD) in the treatment of lumbar stenosis with degenerative spondylolisthesis. Outcomes of interest were both patient-reported measures of postoperative pain and function, as well as the perioperative measures of blood loss, operation duration, hospital stay, and reoperation.


Data were obtained from electronic searches of five online databases. Included studies were limited to randomised-controlled trials (RCTs) which compared DA with DF or IPD using patient-reported outcomes such as the Oswestry Disability Index (ODI) and Zurich Claudication Questionnaire (ZCQ), or perioperative data.

Patient-reported data were reported as part of the systematic review, while meta-analyses were conducted for perioperative outcomes in MATLAB using the DerSimonian and Laird random-effects model. Forest plots were generated for visual interpretation, while heterogeneity was assessed using the I2-statistic.