Study finds, Outcomes with Nonunion After Open Tibial Shaft
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A Study was conducted to evaluate the outcomes of patients who underwent soft tissue flap coverage during treatment of a tibia fracture nonunion.

157 patients were treated for a fracture nonunion after a tibia fracture over a 15-year period. 66 patients had sustained an open tibial fracture initially and 25 of these patients underwent soft tissue flaps for their open tibia fracture nonunion.

--Bony healing was achieved in 24 of 25 patients (96.0%) who received flaps at a mean time to union of 8.7 ± 3.3 months compared with 39 of 41 patients (95.1%) at a mean 7.5 ± 3.2 months in the noncoverage group.
--Healing rate and time to union did not differ between groups.
--At latest follow-up, the flap coverage group reported a mean SMFA index of 17.1 compared with an SMFA index of 27.7 for the noncoverage group.

Using soft tissue flaps in open shaft repair surgery is ultimately connected with a high union rate. Decking or handling of soft tissue flaps did not lead to an improved curative rate or time to union compared to those without flaps. However, the covering of soft tissue flap was associated with increased long-term functional results.