Wide Resection of Primary Malignant Bone Tumors of the Hand in Children and Reconstruction Using Nonvascularized Fibular Bone Graft: Case Series and Literature Review

Published:September 29, 2021DOI:


      Primary malignant bone tumors of the hand are rare in children. Resection and reconstruction of the digit are challenging and have been described in case reports. This retrospective study describes the functional and oncologic outcomes of resection and reconstruction using a nonvascularized fibular bone graft in a cohort of children.


      A total of 5 children were included. The mean age at diagnosis was 7.6 years (range, 1.6–12 years). Histologic diagnosis showed Ewing sarcoma in 3 and osteosarcoma in 2 patients. Four tumors were located in the metacarpal bones of the fingers, and 1 was located in the thumb. Four patients were treated with chemotherapy. All the patients were treated with wide resection and a cement spacer. This was followed by second stage reconstruction using a nonvascularized fibular bone graft. In tumors of the fingers, carpometacarpal joint fusion with a neighboring carpal bone was performed, whereas a pseudoarthrosis was created between the graft and the base of the proximal phalanx. In the thumb’s case, the opposite was done, with fusion at the metacarpophalangeal joint and a pseudoarthrosis at the carpometacarpal joint.


      The mean follow-up duration was 5.5 years (range, 2–9 years). Surgical margins were negative in all the patients. At their latest follow-up visit, none of the patients developed systemic or local recurrence. Two complications required a revision surgery, one due to graft subluxation and the other due to nonunion. At their final follow-up examination, the mean total arc of movement was 80° (range, 60°–100°), and all the patients were able to resume their grasping and writing capabilities.


      The resection and reconstruction of primary malignant bone tumors of the metacarpals using a nonvascularized fibular bone graft in children can preserve the cosmesis and function of the digit without jeopardizing oncologic outcomes.

      Type of study/level of evidence

      Therapeutic V.

      Key words

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