Supracondylar Femoral Frx: Pertinent Anatomy

- Discussion:
    - when viewed in cross section, shape of distal femur resembles trapezoid w/ medial side inclinded about 25 deg & lateral side about 10 deg;
           - both the seating chisel and the subsequent blade plate should be 1 cm to 2 cm short of medial cortex to prevent inadvertent penetration;
           - this is due to the trapezoidal shape of the femoral condyles, which are narrower anteriorly than posteriorly;
    - posterior diameter is longer than the anterior;
           - therefore a plate which appears to be just the right length on AP view will be too long & will penetrate cortex and
                  protrude deep to the MCL or become subcutaneous;
           - correct length is 15 to 20 mm less;
    - anterior surface slopes downwards to medial side and corresponds in inclination to the patellofemoral joint;
           - care must be taken therefore that any device inserted is parallel to this inclination or it will end up in patellofemoral joint;
    - when distal femur is seen on lateral view, it is seen that femoral condyles appear to have been added on posteriorly to the shaft;
           - therefore, target for plate insertion is in middle of anterior half of condyles

Original Text by Clifford R. Wheeless, III, MD.

Last updated by Data Trace Staff on Monday, September 12, 2011 11:44 am