Ilizarov Fixator Technique in Type V and VI Tibial Plateau Fractures: A Case Series

Document Type : Original Article


1 Orthopedic Department, Guilan University of Medical Sciences, Rasht, Iran

2 Orthopedic Department, Kerman University of Medical Sciences, Kerman, Iran

3 Orthopedic Department, Akhtar Hospital, Shahid-Beheshti University of Medical Sciences, Tehran, Iran

4 Orthopedic Research Center, Guilan University of Medical Sciences, Rasht, Iran



Background: Type V and VI tibial plateau fractures are severe fractures that can compromise knee structure and function.
Objectives: We discuss the therapeutic results of external fixator (Ilizarov) for these fractures.
Methods: In this study, 44 patients with high-energy type V and VI tibial plateau fractures treated with Ilizarov external fixator were enrolled. The considered variables were age, sex, fracture type, open or close fracture, soft tissue damage, subjective knee score, knee society score (KSS), and functional knee score (FKS). The obtained data were analyzed using SPSS, version 21.
Results: Thirty-four (77.28%) male and 10 (22.72) female patients with the total mean age of 36.38 years were included. Seventeen (38.63%) patients had open fractures, 38.63% of which were type V and 61.36% were type VI. Complete union was achieved in all the patients (mean union time of 16.95 weeks). Three patients had a flexion limit of up to 10 degrees, and in one patient, extension was limited to 5 degrees. Although pin-site infection was detected in 47.72% of the patients, no cases of osteomyelitis or septic arthritis were encountered. Based on the functional outcomes at the last follow-up, 86.36%, 9.09%, and 4.54% were excellent, good, and fair, respectively.
Conclusions: Based on our findings, Ilizarov technique can be used for the treatment of type V and VI tibial plateau fractures as an effective method with low complications.