BACKGROUND: Multiple osteochondromas is a rare skeletal disorder characterized by the presence of osteocartilaginous protrusions causing bony deformities, especially around the knee. Guided growth by temporary hemiepiphyseal stapling is the treatment of choice to correct the deformity by modulating the residual physeal growth of the lower limbs. Although this procedure is increasingly practiced, inconclusive evidence exists regarding its effectiveness in children with multiple osteochondromas. The study aims to compare the outcomes of temporary hemiepiphyseal stapling for correcting genu valgum in children with multiple osteochondromas vs. idiopathic cases.
METHODS: In this retrospective cohort study, we included patients admitted at a single institution from 2008 to 2018. A total of 97 children (77 idiopathic, 20 multiple osteochondromas) were enclosed, accounting for 184 limbs treated by temporary hemiepiphyseal stapling. We investigated if children with multiple osteochondromas had a similar successful rate of correction, rate of complications, and correction velocity compared to children with idiopathic genu valgum.
RESULTS: Overall, 151 limbs (82%) achieved complete correction or overcorrection, with idiopathic cases having a significantly higher rate of success compared to pathologic cases (88% vs. 55%; p < 0.001). In addition, multiple osteochondromas children sustained a higher rate of major complications (p = 0.021) and showed significantly lower correction velocity (p = 0.029).
CONCLUSION: Temporary hemiepiphyseal stapling is effective in both idiopathic and multiple osteochondromas children, although the latter often achieved incomplete correction, had a higher risk of complications, and required a longer time of stapling. We suggest to anticipate the timing of intervention; otherwise, children with multiple osteochondromas and severe valgus deformity, approaching skeletal maturity, could undergo combined femoral and tibial stapling.
- genu valgum
- growth modulation
- hemiepiphyseal stapling
- multiple osteochondromas