Aneurysmal bone cysts of the distal fibula in children: Long-term results of curettage and resection in nine patients

M. Lampasi, M. Magnani, O. Donzelli

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We report the results of the treatment of nine children with an aneurysmal bone cyst of the distal fibula (seven cysts were juxtaphyseal, and two metaphyseal). The mean age of the children was 10 years and 3 months (7 years and 4 months to 12 years and 9 months). All had open physes. All cysts were active and in seven cases substituted and expanded the entire width of the bone (type-2 lesions). The mean longitudinal extension was 5.7 cm (3 to 10). The presenting symptoms were pain, swelling and pathological fracture. Moderate fibular shortening was evident in one patient. In six patients curettage was performed, using phenol as adjuvant in three. Three with juxtaphyseal lesions underwent resection. A graft from the contralateral fibula (one case) and allografts (two cases) were positioned at the edge of the physis for reconstruction. The mean follow-up was 11.6 years (3.1 to 27.5). There was no recurrence. At the final follow-up there was no significant difference in the American Orthopaedic Foot and Ankle Society scores (excellent/good in all cases) and in growth disturbance, alignment, stability and bone reconstitution, but in the resection group the number of operations, including removal of hardware, complications (two minor) and time of immobilisation/orthosis, were increased. Movement of the ankle was restricted in one patient. The potential risks in the management of these lesions include recurrence, physeal injury, instability of the ankle and hardware and graft complications. Although resection is effective it should be reserved for aggressive or recurrent juxtaphyseal lesions.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1356-1362
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of Bone and Joint Surgery - Series B
Issue number10
Publication statusPublished - Oct 2007

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Orthopedics and Sports Medicine
  • Surgery


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