To determine the failure rate of the DePuy-Synthes variable angle locking compression curved condylar plate (VA-LCP) and quantify failure modes.
Level I Trauma Center.
One hundred thirteen patients with 118 OTA/AO classification 33A and 33C distal femoral fractures were included in the study.
Internal fixation using only the DePuy-Synthes VA-LCP plate.
Main Outcome Measurements:
Primary outcomes included mechanical failure rate of the DePuy-Synthes VA-LCP plate in open and closed fractures. Secondary outcomes included overall failure rate of treatment, risk factors for mechanical failure, and the specific location of failure: loss of fixation in the proximal segment, implant failure over the working length, or failure of locking screw fixation distally.
There were 11 total failures (9.3%) in 118 fractures. Failure rates for the closed and open fracture groups were 5.4% and 15.9%, respectively. Twenty patients (16.9%) required reoperation to promote union. Open fractures (P = 0.00475), the presence of medial metaphyseal comminution (P = 0.037), the length of the zone of comminution (P = 0.037), and plate length (P = 0.0096) were significantly higher in those with implant failure. Most failures (63.6%) were in the working length of the implant.
The use of the Synthes VA-LCP is a viable option in distal femoral fractures and has an acceptable failure rate and reoperation to promote union rate.
Level of Evidence:
Therapeutic Level IV. See Instructions for Authors for a complete description of levels of evidence.