To compare clinical effect of movable external fixation and fusion fixation for the treatment of elbow tuberculosis.
From October 2013 to June 2019, 52 patients with elbow tuberculosis treated with standard antituberculosis therapy were divided into movable external fixation group and fusion fixation group according to treatment methods. In group A, there were 25 patients, including 11 males and 14 females, aged from 24 to 75 years old with an average of (42.81± 9.01) years old; the courses of diseases ranged from 2 to 9 months with an average of (3.96±1.45) months. In group B, there were 27 patients, including 15 males and 12 females, aged from 23 to 77 years old with an averageof (44.08±7.44) years old; the courses of diseases ranged from 2 to 7 months with an average of (3.88±1.67) months. All patients were performed focus debridement. Intraoperative blood loss, operative time were compared between two groups. VAS score before operation, 2 weeks and 12 months after operation were applied to evaluate pain relieve;Mayo elbow performance score (MEPS) before operation, 1 and 12 months after operation were used to evaluate clinical effect;changes of erythrocyte sedimentation rate (ESR) and Creactive protein, CRP) before operation, 3 weeks after antituberculosis therapy, 1 week and 6 months after operation were compared between two groups.
All patients were followed up from 12 to 20 months with an average of (13.50±4.85) months. No mixed infection and recurrence of tuberculosis occurred. There were no statistical differences in intraoperative blood loss and operative time(P>0.05). There was difference in postoperative VAS score at 2 weeks between movable external fixation group (5.15±0.95) and fusion fixation group (4.04±0.84)(P<0.01);while no difference in postoperative VAS score at 12 months between two groups (P>0.05). No difference in ESR and CRP level between two groups before and after operation (P>0.05). Postoperative Mayo score at 1 and 12 months in movable external fixation group were (78.15±7.83) and (90.19±7.13);in fusion fixation group were (70.40±7.61) and (82.60±8.38);there were differences in Mayo score at different time points between two groups(P<0.01).
For elbow tuberculosis, movable external fixation and fusion fixation have equal effect in operative time, amount of bleeding and control of tuberculosis infection indicator. Movable external fixation need earlier functional exercise, not conducive to pain relief at early stage, which may be better than fusion fixation, it is worth clinical promoting.