Combined massive allograft and intramedullary vascularized fibula transfer: the Capanna technique for treatment of congenital pseudarthrosis of the tibia

Stefanie C.M. Van Den Heuvel, Hay A.H. Winters, Klaas H. Ultee, Nienke Zijlstra-Koenrades, Ralph J.B. Sakkers

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

10 Citations (Scopus)


Background and purpose — Congenital pseudarthrosis of the tibia (CPT) is caused by local periosteal disease that can lead to bowing, fracturing, and pseudarthrosis. Current most successful treatment methods are segmental bone transport and vascularized and non-vascularized bone grafting. These methods are commonly hampered by discomfort, reoperations, and long-term complications. We report a combination of a vascularized fibula graft and large bone segment allograft, to improve patient comfort with similar outcomes. Patients and methods — 7 limbs that were operated on in 6 patients between November 2007 and July 2018 with resection of the CPT and reconstruction with a vascularized fibula graft in combination with a bone allograft were retrospectively studied. The mean follow-up time was 5.4 years (0.9–9.6). Postoperative endpoints: time to discharge, time to unrestricted weight bearing, complications within 30 days, consolidation, number of fractures, and secondary deformities. Results — The average time to unrestricted weight bearing with removable orthosis was 3.5 months (1.2–7.8). All proximal anastomoses consolidated within 10 months (2–10). 4 of the 7 grafts fractured at the distal anastomosis between 6 and 14 months postoperatively. After reoperation, consolidation of the distal anastomosis was seen after 2.8 months (2–4). 1 patient required a below-knee amputation. Interpretation — This case series showed favorable results of the treatment of CPT through a combination of a vascularized fibula graft and large bone segment allograft, avoiding the higher reintervention rate and discomfort with ring frame bone transport, and the prolonged non-weight bearing with vascularized fibula transfer without reinforcement with a massive large bone segment allograft.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)605-610
Number of pages6
JournalActa Orthopaedica
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - 2020

Cite this