Calcaneogenesis: the use of tibial bone transport for treatment of massively infected hindfoot defects


Calcanectomy; talectomy; hindfoot defects; Ilizarov technique; tibial bone transport; calcaneogenesis

Published online: May 03 2022

Waleed Ahmed Mekki, Nikolay Mikhailovich Kliushin, Anatoliy Sergeyevich Sudnitsyn

From the Russian Ilizarov Scientific center for Restorative Traumatology and Orthopaedics Infection Department, Russia, Kurgan


Massive hindfoot defects which result after se- questrectomy of chronic osteomyelitis (COM) or Trauma or after tumors resection is a real challenge to the treating surgeons with either amputation or other reconstructive plastic procedures as the only available options, Calcaneal osteomyelitis is a major cause with classical surgical management to cure the infection has limited success in preservation of the hindfoot shape, function, and mechanical stability. The surgical procedure reported with the use of the Ilizarov apparatus for partial or total calcaneal OM is aimed to preserve the Hindfoot.

Materials and Methods We retrospectively reviewed 10 patients which were treated by radical debridement of the infected area, Ilizarov frame application and arthrodesis with bone reconstruction by the Ilizarov apparatus using tibial transport for Hindfoot salvage. The mean age at presentation was 33.5 years (range; 24-57) and the mean follow-up was 5.1 years (range; 2-12).Patients clinical and radiographic data were assessed according to the American Orthopaedic Foot & Ankle Society (AOFAS) Ankle- Hindfoot score.

Results The mean preoperative American Orthopaedic Foot and Ankle Society (AOFAS) Ankle-Hindfoot Score was 48.3(range; 38-86) while the mean postoperative (AOFAS) was 58.5 (range; 45-73) , p value < 0.01 . Clinically all patients had anatomically stable feet with deformity correction and no signs of infection recurrence.

Conclusion The use of Ilizarov distal tibial bone transport to fill massive hindfoot defects proved to be a reliable method for elimination of infection and reconstruction of large defects without the need for bony or soft tissue plastic procedures. The technique also has the ability to produce a rigid limb fixation following debridement and to fill in massive hindfoot defects due to other etiologies as well.