Extracorporeal shockwave therapy (ESWT) in the treatment of atrophic non-unions of femoral shaft fractures

Introduction: As of now, the role of extracorporeal shockwave therapy (ESWT) in the treatment of atrophic non-unions is inconclusive. The purpose of the study was to investigate the effectiveness of ESWT and the role of this technology in the treatment of atrophic non-union of femurs. Methods: We retrospectively analyzed 22 patients treated between July 1999 and September 2007 in our hospital with ESWT for atrophic non-unions of isthmic femoral shaft fractures that were initially treated surgically using closed reamed nailing procedure. Patients with open fractures, skeletal immaturity, on anti-osteoporotic medications, with infections, pathological fractures, smokers, with systemic disease compromising bone healing, and excessive deformity were excluded from this study. Due to incomplete follow-up one (1) patient who moved abroad after ESTW treatment was not included in this study and as part of the 22-patients cohort. Radiographs were obtained before treatment and once a month after treatment for 12 months.

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