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Complications of Tibial Osteotomies in Children With Comorbidities

Payman, K. Rad M.D.; Patenall, Victoria B.S.; Borden, Peter M.D.; Green, Terri P.A.; Otsuka, Norman Y. M.D., F.A.C.S.

Lower Limb

Tibial osteotomies in children have been associated with a number of complications. A retrospective review of 116 children who had 129 tibial osteotomies was performed to assess these complications at our institution. Results showed that there were 35 cases of wound problems, 6 cases of recurrence/reoperation, 5 cases of delayed union, 2 cases with transient peroneal nerve palsy, 1 case of nonunion, and 1 case of mal-union. Patients having certain comorbidities had a higher frequency of complications. There were no significant differences between the location of the tibial osteotomy (proximal or distal) and the incidence of complication. External fixation was associated with a lower incidence of complications than the use of pins and casting. Although our results demonstrate an overall low complication rate, there is a significant association between complications and comorbid conditions. This highlights the need to recognize comorbidities preoperatively and the potential of increased postoperative complications.

Study conducted at the Shriners Hospital for Children, Los Angeles, California, U.S.A.

From the Shriners Hospitals for Children, Los Angeles; and the University of California, Los Angeles, California.

Address correspondence and reprint requests to K. Rad Payman, M.D., Shriners Hospitals for Children, 3160 Geneva Street, Los Angeles, CA 90020–1199 (e-mail:

None of the authors have received financial support for this study.

© 2002 Lippincott Williams & Wilkins, Inc.