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Seventy-six patients underwent 103 arthrodeses of digital joints of the hand to treat deformity, pain, or instability. Each fusion was done by means of a surgical technique that allowed for proper positioning with minimal shortening. No bone graft was used. Only one joint failed to fuse. Bony union was present in 10 weeks or less in 86% of the digits. External immobilization was not used in one third of the joints, primarily low-demand patients with rheumatoid arthritis. There were two superficial pin tract infections that healed after pin removal and a course of oral antibiotics. This surgical technique proved to be technically simple and allowed for easily adjusted positioning of each joint without multiple osteotomies or excess shortening.
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Accepted: October 12, 1987
Received: July 7, 1987
*No benefits in any form have been received or will be received from a commercial party related directly or indirectly to the subject of this article.
© 1988 American Society for Surgery of the Hand. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.