Lateral Entry Trochanteric Intramedullary Nailing of Femur



Lateral Entry Trochanteric Intramedullary Nailing of Femur


Michael Glotzbecker, MD







Patient Positioning



  • Supine on the radiolucent fracture table with legs scissored.



    • Bump underneath ipsilateral buttocks to prevent patient external rotation


    • Leg/body in adduction to allow easier access to the lateral hip with hip positioned as lateral as possible on the table


    • Contralateral leg lower to aid in radiographic lateral imaging


    • Ipsilateral arm across chest over pillow to clear operative side


    • Avoid malrotation by placing the hip and the knee cap to the ceiling. Look longitudinally from the foot and the limb position of the anterior hip and anterior knee should match and make sense. Significant internal or external rotation of the foot and the distal fracture should be a cause of concern and reevaluation.


  • Complete fluoroscopic AP and lateral views at the hip, fracture, and knee to assure ability to visualize femur completely and obtain provisional reduction (Figure 21-36A and B).


  • Lateral on the radiolucent fracture table



    • Helpful for larger patients


    • Historically helpful for piriformis nailing. Lateral entry nails make starting point simple for supine nailing







      Figure 21-36 ▪ A and B, Fluoroscopic views confirming adequate visualization for starting point of guide wires.


  • Supine on the radiolucent table



    • Bump underneath ipsilateral buttocks and flank with prep extending to the level of lilac crest


    • Longitudinal traction maintained by assistant


    • Technically more difficult to maintain traction/rotation


Surgical Approaches



  • Surgical exposure is minimal and may be done through a 3 cm incision.


  • Incision marked out under fluoro, taking care to center incision just proximal and posterior as the direction of reaming and nail placement will be from cephalad to the caudally directed entry point


  • Skin incision, followed by fascial longitudinal split and muscle split in line with gluteal fibers down to just lateral to trochanteric tip.


Reduction and Fixation Techniques



  • Placement of threaded guide wire under fluoro starting at the lateral aspect of the tip of the greater troch just above the midpoint of the trochanteric apophysis. The direction on the AP should be headed from the starting point headed distal to the inferior edge of the less trochanter.


  • On the lateral fluoroscopic view, the threaded guide need to head directly down the shaft, taking care not to be too anterior given this will make the nail passage difficult due to anterior bow in nail (Figures 21-37A, B and 21-38A, B).


  • After confirmed adequate position of threaded tip guide pin the use the cannulated opening reamer which needs to open the proximal femur and should be passed to the level of the lesser trochanter on fluoroscopy (Figure 21-39).


  • Placement of the ball-tipped guide wire may be done keeping the ball tip directed lateral to “bounce” down medial cortex at the level of lesser troch; the ball tip should be then passed to the fracture and checked on fluoroscopy.

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Feb 5, 2020 | Posted by in ORTHOPEDIC | Comments Off on Lateral Entry Trochanteric Intramedullary Nailing of Femur
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