After treatment with in situ stabilization, slipped capital femoral epiphysis (SCFE) patients have variable degrees of deformity that can contribute to femoroacetabular impingement (FAI). To evaluate the severity of residual deformity most physicians currently use biplanar radiographs of an anteroposterior pelvis which profiles the lateral head-neck deformity and a frog lateral view which profiles the anterior head-neck deformity. However, the assessment of FAI morphology commonly relies on the 45-degree Dunn view to profile the anterolateral head-neck junction where FAI deformity is maximal. Therefore, the purpose of this study was to compare the magnitude of residual SCFE deformity detected on the frog lateral radiograph to the 45-degree Dunn radiograph.
A retrospective review of radiographic images of 50 hips (47 patients) diagnosed with SCFE at a single academic institution from 2014 to 2018 was performed. The group included 25 hips evaluated postoperatively after fixation (Group 1) and 25 hips presenting with residual symptomatic SCFE deformity after previous pinning (Group 2). The alpha angle was assessed on both the 45-degree Dunn and frog lateral views for comparison. The modified Southwick slip angle was assessed on the frog lateral view only as a measure of SCFE severity.
The Dunn view showed the maximal residual SCFE deformity as measured by the alpha angle in 88% (44/50) of cases. Overall, the mean alpha angle (70.7 degree vs. 60.1 degree, P<0.001) was significantly larger on the Dunn view as compared with frog lateral. Subgroup analysis showed a larger alpha angle on Dunn view compared with frog lateral in both immediate postoperative and residual SCFE deformities as well: Group 1 (69.5 degree vs. 60.9 degree, P<0.001) and Group 2 (71.9 degree vs. 59.3 degree, P<0.001).
In patients with SCFE, the maximal residual deformity of the proximal femur can typically be seen on the 45-degree Dunn view, rather than on the frog lateral view. Our findings suggest the 45-degree Dunn view may be beneficial part of the postoperative assessment of SCFEs to quantify the true maximal deformity present.
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