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1.  Is DBM Beneficial for the Enhancement of Bony Consolidation in Distraction Osteogenesis? A Randomized Controlled Trial 
BioMed Research International  2015;2015:281738.
The aim of the present study was to compare the radiographic and clinical outcomes of DBM injection and conventional treatment during tibial lengthening over an intramedullary nail in adult patients with short stature. Twenty-nine patients were randomized to receive DBM injection (n = 14) or conventional treatment without any injection (n = 15) and evaluated. The outcome was measured on the basis of the pixel value ratio (PVR) in the digital radiographs during the consolidation period; healing index; clinical assessment; and the rate of complications. In the DBM group, the mean PVR of 1 (mineral density of the callus is comparable to the adjacent bone) was reached by 40 weeks in anterior and medial cortices which was significantly different than that in the control group (P = 0.03 for anterior cortex; P = 0.04 for medial cortex). The average healing index in the DBM group was 39.8 ± 5.3 days/cm compared to 44.3 ± 5.8 days/cm in the control group (P = 0.05). There were no significant differences in clinical outcomes (P = 0.23) and functional status (P = 0.47) including complications (P = 0.72) between two groups. In this randomized clinical trial, injection of DBM at the time of initial operation enhanced consolidation of regenerate callus without interfering with clinical outcomes compared to that with conventional treatment.
PMCID: PMC4326219
2.  The Significance of Serum Phosphate Level on Healing Index and Its Relative Effects in Skeletally Immature and Mature Patients with Hypophosphatemic Rickets 
BioMed Research International  2014;2014:569530.
The aim of this study was to find out the ideal cut-off level of phosphate for safe healing when deformity correction and concomitant lengthening are indicated in the two different skeletal maturity groups of patients with rickets. Thirty-nine hypophosphatemic rickets patients were selected for the study and were divided into two groups: 27 skeletally immature (group IM) and 12 skeletally mature (group M). The outcomes were evaluated with respect to the healing index (HI), laboratory findings, and complications with the mean follow-up of 5.1 years (range, 3.1–7.9). The healing index (HI) of group IM was 1.44 month/cm and HI of group M was 1.68 month/cm. The negative correlation between the level of serum phosphate and HI in group M (coefficient = −0.94) was evaluated to be less than the correlation in group IM (coefficient = −0.50), indicating that the HI is more likely to be affected by serum phosphate in group M than in group IM. Preoperative serum phosphate levels of 2.3 mg/dL and 2.6 mg/dL were analyzed to be the cut-off values of group IM and group M, respectively, in which the cut-off points divided the series into two groups having the most significantly different HI.
PMCID: PMC4017876  PMID: 24868530
3.  Bone Formation in a Rat Tibial Defect Model Using Carboxymethyl Cellulose/BioC/Bone Morphogenic Protein-2 Hybrid Materials 
BioMed Research International  2014;2014:230152.
The objective of this study was to assess whether carboxymethyl cellulose- (CMC-) based hydrogel containing BioC (biphasic calcium phosphate (BCP); tricalcium phosphate (TCP) : hydroxyapatite (Hap) = 70 : 30) and bone morphogenic protein-2 (BMP-2) led to greater bone formation than CMC-based hydrogel containing BioC without BMP-2. In order to demonstrate bone formation at 4 and 8 weeks, plain radiographs, microcomputed tomography (micro-CT) evaluation, and histological studies were performed after implantation of all hybrid materials on an 8 mm defect of the right tibia in rats. The plain radiographs and micro-CT analyses revealed that CMC/BioC/BMP-2 (0.5 mg) led to much greater mineralization at 4 and 8 weeks than did CMC/BioC or CMC/Bio/BMP-2 (0.1 mg). Likewise, bone formation and bone remodeling studies revealed that CMC/BioC/BMP-2 (0.5 mg) led to a significantly greater amount of bone formation and bone remodeling at 4 and 8 weeks than did CMC/BioC or CMC/BioC/BMP-2 (0.1 mg). Histological studies revealed that mineralized bone tissue was present around the whole circumference of the defect site with CMC/BioC/BMP-2 (0.5 mg) but not with CMC/BioC or CMC/BioC/BMP-2 (0.1 mg) at 4 and 8 weeks. These results suggest that CMC/BioC/BMP-2 hybrid materials induced greater bone formation than CMC/BioC hybrid materials. Thus, CMC/BioC/BMP-2 hybrid materials may be used as an injectable substrate to regenerate bone defects.
PMCID: PMC3997084  PMID: 24804202
4.  How Reliable Are Standard Radiographic Measures of the Foot and Ankle in Children With Achondroplasia? 
Radiographic measurements are typically used in achondroplasia (ACH) during correction of lower limb alignment. However, reliabilities for the measurements on weightbearing radiographs of the foot and ankle in patients with ACH have not been described, and the differences between the ACH population and subjects without ACH likewise have not been well characterized; these issues limit the use of studies on this subject.
We proposed (1) to measure the inter- and intraobserver reliability of a number of radiographic measures of ankle and foot alignment in an achondroplastic cohort of patients; and (2) to compare our radiographic measurement values with age-matched literature-based normative values.
Ten radiographic measurements were applied to foot and ankle radiographs of 20 children (40 feet) with ACH (mean age, 10 years; range, 8–16 years). Interobserver and intraobserver reliabilities of these radiographic measurement methods were obtained and expressed by intraclass correlation coefficients (ICCs). The mean values were calculated and compared with the literature-based values.
The interobserver reliability was excellent for eight measurements with ICCs ranging from 0.801 to 0.962, except for lateral talo-first metatarsal angle and mediolateral column ratio, which were much lower. The intraobserver reliability was excellent for all 10 radiographic measurements with ICCs ranging from 0.812 to 0.998. Compared with existing literature-based values, all 10 measurements had a significant difference (p < 0.01).
We suggest tibiotalar angle, calcaneal pitch angle, tibiocalcaneal angle, talocalcaneal angle, naviculocuboid overlap, talonavicular coverage angle, metatarsal stacking angle, and AP talo-first metatarsal angle with excellent interobserver and intraobserver reliabilities should be considered preferentially in analysis of foot and ankle alignment in children with ACH.
Level of Evidence
Level II, diagnostic study. See Guidelines for Authors for a complete description of levels of evidence.
PMCID: PMC3734405  PMID: 23609814
5.  Can Residual Leg Shortening Be Predicted in Patients With Legg-Calvé-Perthes’ Disease? 
Although Legg-Calvé-Perthes’ disease (LCPD) is frequently associated with varying degrees of femoral head deformity and leg length discrepancy (LLD), no factors that predict residual shortening have been clearly identified.
We attempted to determine whether (1) the extent of femoral head involvement; (2) varus osteotomy; and (3) patient demographic characteristics are associated with LLD at skeletal maturity in patients with LCPD.
We retrospectively reviewed the records of 168 skeletally mature patients with unilateral LCPD. The mean age at diagnosis was 7 years (range, 2–14 years). The extent of femoral head involvement was determined from the initial radiographs using the Herring lateral pillar and Catterall classifications. LLD was defined as shortening by ≥ 1.0 cm as measured from scanograms. The patient’s sex and the treatment modalities used were also recorded.
LLD ranging from 10 to 38 mm (mean, 19 mm) occurred in 93 (55%) patients and was associated with the extent of femoral head involvement. Varus osteotomy was not associated with residual shortening. The patient’s age at diagnosis did not affect the LLD at skeletal maturity. The strongest predictor of LLD was a lateral pillar classification of B/C or C (odds ratio, 3.5; 95% confidence interval, 1.39–8.79).
The extent of femoral head involvement, but not the patient’s age at diagnosis or sex or the treatment modality, can predict the LLD at skeletal maturity in patients with unilateral LCPD.
Level of Evidence
Level II, prognostic study. See Guidelines for Authors for a complete description of levels of evidence.
PMCID: PMC3705048  PMID: 23616268
6.  Comparison of orthopaedic manifestations of multiple epiphyseal dysplasia caused by MATN3 versus COMP mutations: a case control study 
Multiple epiphyseal dysplasia (MED) is a relatively common skeletal dysplasia mainly involving the epiphyses of the long bones. However, it is a genetically heterogeneous group of diseases sharing certain aspects of the radiologic phenotype. In surveys conducted in East Asia, MATN3 was the most common causative gene, followed by COMP. In this study, the authors compared clinical manifestation of MED patients caused by MATN3 and COMP gene mutations, as well as subsequent orthopaedic interventions.
Fifty nine molecularly-confirmed MED patients were subjects of this study. The MATN3 gene mutation group comprised of 37 patients (9 female, 28 male). The COMP gene mutation consisted of 22 cases (15 females, 7 males). Medical records and radiographs were reviewed, and questionnaire surveys or telephone interviews were conducted.
At the first presentation, the mean age was 8.8 ± 2.8 years (mean ± standard deviation) in the MATN3 group, and 8.5 ± 3.5 years in the COMP group (p = 0.670). The height in the COMP group was significantly shorter than those in the MATN3 group (p < 0.001). Gait abnormality at the first visit (p = 0.041) and the lastest follow-up (p = 0.037) were statistically significant difference. Hip pain (p = 0.084), limitation of daily activity (p = 0.075) at the latest follow-up tended to be more frequent in the COMP group. Hip dysplasia was more common in the COMP group, having significantly larger acetabular angle (p = 0.037), smaller center-edge angle (p = 0.002), severe Stulberg classification (p < 0.001), and smaller femoral head coverage (p < 0.001).
Clinical manifestations of MED caused by MATN3 were milder than manifestations of the COMP mutation group. These differences in clinical manifestation and prognosis justify molecular differentiation between the two genotypes.
PMCID: PMC3984757  PMID: 24629099
Multiple epiphyseal dysplasia; COMP; MATN3; Clinical manifestations
7.  A Case of Metatropic Dysplasia: Operative Treatment of Severe Kyphoscoliosis and Limb Deformities 
Oman Medical Journal  2013;28(6):445-447.
Metatropic dysplasia is a rare but severe spondyloepimetaphyseal dysplasia characterized by long trunk and short extremities. The exact incidence is not known; however, 81 cases have been reported in the literature till now. Due to progressive kyphoscoliosis, there is a reversal of proportions in childhood (shortening of trunk with relative long extremities). The diagnostic radiographic findings include marked platyspondyly (wafer-thin vertebral bodies), widened metaphyses (dumbbell-shaped tubular bones) and small epiphysis and a specific pelvic shape. The severe kyphoscoliosis is relentless and resistant to conservative treatment with bracing. Operative treatment is controversial due to the recurrence of deformity despite aggressive correction. We, herein report a case of this rare dysplasia and its follow-up after corrective surgery for spine and limb deformity. The excellent correction and good functional pulmonary status at 6-year follow-up has never been previously reported.
PMCID: PMC3815851  PMID: 24223250
Kyphoscoliosis; Metatropic dysplasia; Deformity correction
8.  Rhythmic Oscillation of Histone Acetylation and Methylation at the Arabidopsis Central Clock Loci 
Molecules and Cells  2012;34(3):279-287.
Circadian clock genes are regulated by a transcriptional-translational feedback loop. In Arabidopsis, LATE ELONGATED HYPOCOTYL (LHY) and CIRCADIAN CLOCK ASSOCIATED 1 (CCA1) transcripts are highly expressed in the morning. Translated LHY and CCA1 proteins repress the expression of TIMING OF CAB EXPRESSION 1 (TOC1), which peaks in the evening. TOC1 protein induces expression of LHY and CCA1, forming a negative feedback loop which is believed to constitute the oscillatory mechanism of the clock. The rhythmic oscillation of mouse clock genes mPERIOD 1 (mPER1) and mPER2 has been correlated with regular alteration of chromatin structure through histone acetylation/deacetylation. However, little is known about the relationship between the transcriptional activity of Arabidopsis clock genes and their chromatin status. Here, we report that histone H3 acetylation (H3Ac) and H3 lysine 4 tri-methylation (H3K4me3) levels at LHY, CCA1, and TOC1 are positively correlated with the rhythmic transcript levels of these genes, whereas H3K36me2 level shows a negative correlation. Thus, our study suggests rhythmic transcription of Arabidopsis clock genes might be regulated by rhythmic histone modification, and it provides a platform for future identification of clock-controlling histone modifiers.
PMCID: PMC3887839  PMID: 22878891
Arabidopsis; chromatin; circadian clock; circadian rhythm; histone modification
9.  Does Short-term Application of an Ilizarov Frame with Transfixion Pins Correct Relapsed Clubfoot in Children? 
Treatment of relapsed clubfoot after soft tissue release in children is difficult because of the high recurrence rate and related complications. Even though the Ilizarov method is used for soft tissue distraction, there is a high incidence of recurrence after removal of the Ilizarov frame owing to previous contracture of soft tissue and a skin scar.
We asked (1) whether transfixation of midfoot joints by temporary K wires during the consolidation stage after short-term application of an Ilizarov frame would maintain correction of the relapsed clubfoot clinicoradiologically and (2) whether this method would reduce the rate of recurrence and related complications in patients with a skin scar from previous surgery.
We retrospectively reviewed 18 patients (19 feet) with relapsed clubfeet who underwent correction by soft tissue distraction using an Ilizarov ring fixator, between March 2005 and June 2008. The mean age of the patients was 8 ± 2 years (range, 4–15 years). K wire fixation for the midfoot joints combined with a below-knee cast were used during the consolidation stage. The minimum followup was 2 years (mean, 4.5 years; range, 2–6 years).
The average duration of frame application was 5 weeks; the mean duration of treatment was 11 weeks. At last followup, 16 of 19 feet were painless and plantigrade and only three of 19 feet had recurrence. The mean preoperative clinical American Foot and Ankle Society (AOFAS) score had increased at last followup (57 versus 81). The values of the AP talocalcaneal, AP talo-first metatarsal, and lateral calcaneo-first metatarsal angles improved after treatment. The three recurrent clubfeet were treated by corrective osteotomies and Ilizarov frame application.
This method could maintain the correction of relapsed clubfoot in children and reduce the recurrence rate and complications regardless of the presence of a skin scar owing to previous surgery.
Level of Evidence
Level IV, case series. See the Guidelines for Authors for a complete description of levels of evidence.
PMCID: PMC3369077  PMID: 22354613
10.  Role of hybrid monolateral fixators in managing humeral length and deformity correction 
Acta Orthopaedica  2013;84(3):280-285.
Background and purpose
Humeral lengthening and deformity correction are now being done increasingly for various etiologies. Monolateral external fixators have advantages over traditional Ilizarov circular fixators; they are easy to apply, they are less bulky, and they are therefore more convenient for the patient. We assessed the effectiveness of hybrid monolateral lateral fixators in humeral lengthening and deformity correction.
We retrospectively reviewed 23 patients (40 humeri) with various pathologies who underwent lengthening—with or without deformity correction using monolateral external fixator—between 2003 and 2008. Mean age at the time of the surgery was 14 (10–22) years. The mean follow-up time was 3.4 (1–7) years.
The average duration of external fixator use was 8.3 (6–19) months. The mean lengthening achieved was 8.8 (4–11) cm and percentage lengthening was 49% (19–73). The healing index was 28 (13–60) days/cm. The major complications were refracture in 3 humeri and varus angulation of 2 humeri. The minor complications were superficial pin tract infection (6 segments), transient radial nerve palsy (1 segment), and elbow flexion contracture (5 segments). All complications resolved.
Hybrid monolateral fixators can be used for humeral lengthening and deformity correction. The advantage over circular fixators is that they are less bulky and patients can perform their day-to-day activities with the fixator in situ.
PMCID: PMC3715829  PMID: 23506166
11.  Fibrocartilaginous Intramedullary Bone Forming Tumor of the Distal Femur Mimicking Osteosarcoma 
Journal of Korean Medical Science  2013;28(4):631-635.
Fibrocartilaginous dysplasia (FCD) has occasionally led to a misdiagnosis and wrong decision which can significantly alter the outcome of the patients. A 9-yr-old boy presented with pain on his left distal thigh for 6 months without any trauma history. Initial radiographs showed moth eaten both osteolytic and osteosclerotic lesions and biopsy findings showed that the lesion revealed many irregular shaped and sclerotic mature and immature bony trabeculae. Initial diagnostic suggestions were varied from the conventional osteosarcoma to low grade central osteosarcoma or benign intramedullary bone forming lesion, but close observation was done. This study demonstrated a case of unusual fibrocartilaginous intramedullary bone forming tumor mimicking osteosarcoma, so that possible misdiagnosis might be made and unnecessary extensive surgical treatment could be performed. In conclusion, the role of orthopaedic oncologist as a decision maker is very important when the diagnosis is uncertain.
PMCID: PMC3617321  PMID: 23580060
Fibrocartilaginous Dysplasia; Osteosarcoma; Orthopaedic Oncologist; Diagnosis
12.  Upper torso and pelvis linear velocity during the downswing of elite golfers 
During a golf swing, analysis of the movement in upper torso and pelvis is a key step to determine a motion control strategy for accurate and consistent shots. However, a majority of previous studies that have evaluated this movement limited their analysis only to the rotational movement of segments, and translational motions were not examined. Therefore, in this study, correlations between translational motions in the 3 axes, which occur between the upper torso and pelvis, were also examined.
The experiments were carried out with 14 male pro-golfers (age: 29 ± 8 years, career: 8.2 ± 4.8years) who registered in the Korea Professional Golf Association (KPGA). Six infrared cameras (VICON; Oxford Metrics, Oxford, UK) and SB-Clinc software (SWINGBANK Ltd, Korea) were used to collect optical marker trajectories. The center of mass (CoM) of each segment was calculated based on kinematic principal. In addition, peak value of CoM velocity and the time that each peak occurred in each segment during downswing was calculated. Also, using cross-correlation analysis, the degree of coupling and time lags of peak values occurred between and within segments (pelvis and upper torso) were investigated.
As a result, a high coupling strength between upper torso and pelvis with an average correlation coefficient = 0.86 was observed, and the coupling between segments was higher than that within segments (correlation coefficient = 0.81 and 0.77, respectively).
Such a high coupling at the upper torso and pelvis can be used to reduce the degree of motion control in the central nervous system and maintain consistent patterns in the movement. The result of this study provides important information for the development of optimal golf swing movement control strategies in the future.
PMCID: PMC3599250  PMID: 23398693
Golf; Linear velocity; Coupling; Cross-correlation; Downswing
13.  Is Bilateral Lower Limb Lengthening Appropriate for Achondroplasia?: Midterm Analysis of the Complications and Quality of Life 
Use of the Ilizarov technique for limb lengthening in patients with achondroplasia is controversial, with a high risk of complications balancing cosmetic gains. Although several articles have described the complications of this procedure and satisfaction of patients after surgery, it remains unclear whether lengthening improves the quality of life (QOL) of these patients.
We asked whether bilateral lower limb lengthenings with deformity correction in patients with achondroplasia would improve QOL and investigated the correlation between complication rate and QOL.
Patients and Methods
We retrospectively reviewed 22 patients (average age, 12.7 years) diagnosed with achondroplasia who underwent bilateral lower limb lengthenings between 2002 and 2005. These patients were compared with 22 patients with achondroplasia for whom limb lengthening was not performed. The two groups were assessed using the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons (AAOS) lower limb, SF-36, and Rosenberg self-esteem scores. Minimum followup was 4.5 years (range, 4.5–6.9 years).
Among the lengthening group, the average gain in length was 10.21 ± 2.39 cm for the femur and 9.13 ± 2.12 cm for the tibia. A total of 123 complications occurred in these 88 segments. The surgical group had higher Rosenberg self-esteem scores than the nonsurgical group although there were no differences in the AAOS and the SF-36 scores. The self-esteem scores decreased with the increase in the number of complications.
Our data suggest that despite frequent complications, bilateral lower limb lengthening increases patients’ QOL. We believe lengthening is a reasonable option in selected patients.
Level of Evidence
Level IV, therapeutic study. See the Guidelines for Authors for a complete description of levels of evidence.
PMCID: PMC3254769  PMID: 21785895
14.  Congenital pseudarthrosis of the tibia treated with a combination of Ilizarov’s technique and intramedullary rodding 
Acta Orthopaedica  2012;83(5):515-522.
Background and purpose
Ilizarov’s technique and intramedullary rodding have often been used individually in congenital pseudarthrosis of the tibia. In this series, we attempted to combine the advantages of both methods while minimizing the complications.
We reviewed 15 cases of congenital pseudoarthrosis of the tibia (CPT) who were treated with a combination of Ilizarov’s apparatus and antegrade intramedullary nailing between 2003 and 2008. The mean age at surgery was 7.5 (3–12) years and the mean limb length discrepancy was 2.5 (1.5–5) cm. At a mean follow-up time of 4.5 (1.6–7.2) years after the index surgery, the patients were evaluated clinically and radiographically for ankle function (AOFAS score) and for malalignment, signs of union, limb length discrepancy, and complications.
14 patients achieved union, in 6 patients primary union and in 8 patients after secondary procedures. The AOFAS score improved from a preoperative mean of 40 (20–57) to 64 (47–75). The main complication was refracture in 1 patient, and non-union in 1 patient.
The combination of the Ilizarov technique and conventional antegrade intramedullary nailing was successful in achieving union with few complications, though this should be shown in long-term studies lasting until skeletal maturity.
PMCID: PMC3488180  PMID: 23043268
15.  Fibula-related complications during bilateral tibial lengthening 
Acta Orthopaedica  2012;83(3):271-275.
Background and purpose
Complications related to the fibula during distraction osteogenesis could cause malalignment. Most published studies have analyzed only migration of the fibula during lengthening, with few studies examining the effects of fibular complications.
Patients and methods
We retrospectively reviewed 120 segments (in 60 patients) between 2002 and 2009. All patients underwent bilateral tibial lengthening of more than 5 cm. The mean follow-up time was 4.9 (2.5–6.9) years.
The average lengthening percentage was 34% (21–65). The ratio of mean fibular length to tibial length was 1.05 (0.91–1.11) preoperatively and 0.83 (0.65–0.95) postoperatively. The mean proximal fibular migration (PFM) was 15 (4–31) mm and mean distal fibular migration (DFM) was 9.7 (0–24) mm. Premature consolidation occurred in 10 segments, nonunion occurred in 12, and angulation of fibula occurred in 8 segments after lengthening. Valgus deformities of the knee occurred in 10 segments.
PFM induced valgus deformity of the knee, and premature consolidation of the fibula was associated with the distal migration of the proximal fibula. These mechanical malalignments could sometimes be serious enough to warrant surgical correction. Thus, during lengthening repeated radiographic examinations of the fibula are necessary to avoid complications.
PMCID: PMC3369154  PMID: 22329670
16.  Physeal growth arrest after tibial lengthening in achondroplasia 
Acta Orthopaedica  2012;83(3):282-287.
Background and purpose
Bilateral tibial lengthening has become one of the standard treatments for upper segment-lower segment disproportion and to improve quality of life in achondroplasia. We determined the effect of tibial lengthening on the tibial physis and compared tibial growth that occurred at the physis with that in non-operated patients with acondroplasia.
We performed a retrospective analysis of serial radiographs until skeletal maturity in 23 achondroplasia patients who underwent bilateral tibial lengthening before skeletal maturity (lengthening group L) and 12 achondroplasia patients of similar height and age who did not undergo tibial lengthening (control group C). The mean amount of lengthening of tibia in group L was 9.2 cm (lengthening percentage: 60%) and the mean age at the time of lengthening was 8.2 years. The mean duration of follow-up was 9.8 years.
Skeletal maturity (fusion of physis) occurred at 15.2 years in group L and at 16.0 years in group C. The actual length of tibia (without distraction) at skeletal maturity was 238 mm in group L and 277 mm in group C (p = 0.03). The mean growth rates showed a decrease in group L relative to group C from about 2 years after surgery. Physeal closure was most pronounced on the anterolateral proximal tibial physis, with relative preservation of the distal physis.
Our findings indicate that physeal growth rate can be disturbed after tibial lengthening in achondroplasia, and a close watch should be kept for such an occurrence—especially when lengthening of more than 50% is attempted.
PMCID: PMC3369156  PMID: 22489887
17.  Effect of Genetically Modified Poplars on Soil Microbial Communities during the Phytoremediation of Waste Mine Tailings▿† 
Applied and Environmental Microbiology  2011;77(21):7611-7619.
The application of transgenic plants to clean up environmental pollution caused by the wastes of heavy metal mining is a promising method for removing metal pollutants from soils. However, the effect of using genetically modified organisms for phytoremediation is a poorly researched topic in terms of microbial community structures, despite the important role of microorganisms in the health of soil. In this study, a comparative analysis of the bacterial and archaeal communities found in the rhizosphere of genetically modified (GM) versus wild-type (WT) poplar was conducted on trees at different growth stages (i.e., the rhizospheres of 1.5-, 2.5-, and 3-year-old poplars) that were cultivated on contaminated soils together with nonplanted control soil. Based on the results of DNA pyrosequencing, poplar type and growth stages were associated with directional changes in the structure of the microbial community. The rate of change was faster in GM poplars than in WT poplars, but the microbial communities were identical in the 3-year-old poplars. This phenomenon may arise because of a higher rate and greater extent of metal accumulation in GM poplars than in naturally occurring plants, which resulted in greater changes in soil environments and hence the microbial habitat.
PMCID: PMC3209168  PMID: 21890678
18.  Reliability analysis for radiographic measures of lumbar lordosis in adult scoliosis: a case–control study comparing 6 methods 
European Spine Journal  2010;19(9):1551-1557.
Several methods are used to measure lumbar lordosis. In adult scoliosis patients, the measurement is difficult due to degenerative changes in the vertebral endplate as well as the coronal and sagittal deformity. We did the observational study with three examiners to determine the reliability of six methods for measuring the global lumbar lordosis in adult scoliosis patients. Ninety lateral lumbar radiographs were collected for the study. The radiographs were divided into normal (Cobb < 10°), low-grade (Cobb 10°–19°), high-grade (Cobb  ≥ 20°) group to determine the reliability of Cobb L1–S1, Cobb L1–L5, centroid, posterior tangent L1–S1, posterior tangent L1–L5 and TRALL method in adult scoliosis. The 90 lateral radiographs were measured twice by each of the three examiners using the six measurement methods. The data was analyzed to determine the inter- and intra-observer reliability. In general, for the six radiographic methods, the inter- and intra-class correlation coefficients (ICCs) were all ≥0.82. A comparison of the ICCs and 95% CI for the inter- and intra-observer reliability between the groups with varying degrees of scoliosis showed that, the reliability of the lordosis measurement decreased with increasing severity of scoliosis. In Cobb L1–S1, centroid and posterior tangent L1–S1 methods, the ICCs were relatively lower in the high-grade scoliosis group (≥0.60). And, the mean absolute difference (MAD) in these methods was high in the high-grade scoliosis group (≤7.17°). However, in the Cobb L1–L5 and posterior tangent L1–L5 method, the ICCs were ≥0.86 in all groups. And, in the TRALL method, the ICCs were ≥0.76 in all groups. In addition, in the Cobb L1–L5 and posterior tangent L1–L5 method, the MAD was ≤3.63°. And, in the TRALL method, the MAD was ≤3.84° in all groups. We concluded that the Cobb L1–L5 and the posterior tangent L1–L5 methods are reliable methods for measuring the global lumbar lordosis in adult scoliosis. And the TRALL method is more reliable method than other methods which include the L5–S1 joint in lordosis measurement.
PMCID: PMC2989293  PMID: 20437183
Adult scoliosis; Lumbar lordosis; Radiographic measurement
21.  Evaluation of pelvic fixation in neuromuscular scoliosis: a retrospective study in 55 patients 
International Orthopaedics  2008;34(1):89-96.
The literature has described different indications for pelvic fixation in neuromuscular scoliosis. We retrospectively evaluated changes in pelvic obliquity for a minimum of two years among three groups: group I (initial pelvic obliquity >15°; with pelvic fixation), group II (initial pelvic obliquity >15°; without pelvic fixation), and group III (initial pelvic obliquity <15°; without pelvic fixation). We used iliac screws for pelvic fixation in group I. There was significant postoperative improvement (p < 0.0001) in Cobb’s angle and pelvic obliquity. There was no significant loss of correction in Cobb’s angle, thoracic kyphosis, and lumbar lordosis among all three groups; however, group II showed significant correction loss in pelvic obliquity compared to groups I and III at final follow-up (p < 0.0001). Our results indicate that patients who have pelvic obliquity >15° require pelvic fixation to maintain the correction and balance over time while obliquity <15° does not require pelvic fixation.
PMCID: PMC2899259  PMID: 19052744
22.  Objective Guidelines for Removing an External Fixator after Tibial Lengthening Using Pixel Value Ratio: A Pilot Study 
During limb lengthening over an intramedullary nail, decisions regarding external fixator removal and weightbearing depend on the amount of callus seen at the lengthening area on radiographs. However, this method is subjective and objective evaluation of the amount of callus likely would minimize nail or interlocking screw breakage and refracture after fixator removal. We asked how many cortices with full corticalization of the newly formed bone at the lengthening area are needed to allow fixator removal and full weightbearing and how to radiographically determine the stage of corticalization. We retrospectively reviewed 17 patients (34 lengthenings) who underwent bilateral tibial lengthenings over an intramedullary nail. The average gain in length was 7.2 ± 3.4 cm. We determined the pixel value ratio (ratio of pixel value of regenerate versus the mean pixel value of adjacent bone) of the lengthened area on radiographs. There were no nail or screw breakage and refracture. Partial weightbearing with crutches was permitted when the pixel value ratio was 1 in two cortices and full weightbearing without crutches was permitted when the pixel value ratio was 1 in three cortices. The pixel value ratio on radiographs can be an objective parameter for callus measurement and may provide guidelines for the timing of external fixator removal. We cannot determine from our limited data the minimum pixel value in how many cortices would suggest safe removal, but we can say our criteria were not associated with subsequent refracture.
PMCID: PMC2772908  PMID: 19657702
23.  Leg lengthening by distraction osteogenesis using the Ilizarov apparatus: a novel concept of tibia callus subsidence and its influencing factors 
International Orthopaedics  2008;33(6):1753-1759.
This article studies the incidence and magnitude of delayed callus subsidence, which will also help in study the hypothesis of three cortex corticalisation to determine the time of fixator removal during distraction osteogenesis (DO). Eighty-one tibia segments with mean lengthening of 7.7 ± 2.9 cm were studied with age, gender, skeletal maturity, amount and percentage of lengthening, callus pattern, callus shape, number of cortices seen at the time of fixator removal, bone mineral density (BMD) ratio, and callus diameter ratio analysed for their effect on callus subsidence. All segments had tibia callus subsidence ranging from 4 mm to 3.2 cm with 54% having significant subsidence of more than 1 cm. Multivariate regression analysis revealed only the amount of lengthening and callus patterns to be significant. In conclusion, we can say that tibia callus subsidence is a significant delayed complication and factors affecting it can be used to determine the time of fixator removal.
PMCID: PMC2899179  PMID: 18923832
24.  Skeletal age in idiopathic short stature: An analytical study by the TW3 method, Greulich and Pyle method 
Indian Journal of Orthopaedics  2010;44(3):322-326.
The skeletal age in short stature and in various other growth abnormalities is well documented. We lack the study pertaining to the analysis of the skeletal age in idiopathic short stature or analyzing the difference in skeletal age delay or advancement between the familial short stature (FSS) and non-familial short stature (non-FSS) groups, hence this study. Present retrospective study is designed to study the variation in patterns of skeletal age in ISS.
Materials and Methods:
One hundred and eighty six patients, 95 males and 91 females of idiopathic short stature were examined to assess the skeletal age deviation in relation to chronological age. The radiographs of the left hand and wrist were done. The skeletal age was assessed using Tanner and Whitehouse (TW3) method and Greulich and Pyle (GP) atlas. The patients were divided into two groups based on the parental heights. Group A (Familial Short Stature; FSS) with 100 patients (55 males, 45 females) included patients whose at least one parent was short and Group B (non-Familial Short Stature; non-FSS) with 86 patients (40 males, 46 females), included patients whose parental height was normal. The carpal scores, RUS (Radius, Ulna and Short bone) scores and GP age were determined and the respective delay or advances were calculated.
The skeletal age in Group A was delayed relative to chronological age by a mean of 1.9 years in males and 2.3 years in females (P<0.05) by RUS method, mean of 2.7 years in males and 2.6 years in females by Carpal score (P<0.05), 2.2 years in males and 2.7 years in females by GP atlas age (P<0.05). The skeletal age in Group B was advanced by a mean of 0.9 years in males and 1.4 years in females (P<0.05) by RUS method, mean of 0.4 years in males and 0.35 years in females by Carpal score (P<0.05), mean of 1.1 years in males and 0.2 years in females by GP atlas method (P<0.05). The Pearson’s coefficient of correlation (P<.001) demonstrated good agreement association between all three scores.
There is definite age delay in both males and females in the FSS group while the bone maturation is accelerated in the non-FSS group. Both RUS and GP show good correlation amongst both the genders in both the groups and there is good inter observer correlation for both the methods. We can hypothesize that while treatment protocols to accelerate bone age will be beneficial in the FSS group, these should be avoided in the non-FSS group. Our study also indicates that there definitely exists a difference in normal growth curves in both these groups and a detailed study is required to plot their respective normal growth lines so as to make proper adjustments in the assessment of the remaining growth and limb lengthening protocols.
PMCID: PMC2911934  PMID: 20697487
Greulich and Pyle atlas; idiopathic short stature; skeletal age; TW3 method
25.  Accuracy of thoracic pedicle screw placement in scoliosis using the ideal pedicle entry point during the freehand technique 
International Orthopaedics  2008;33(2):469-475.
Previously, we described the ideal pedicle entry point (IPEP) for the thoracic spine at the base of the superior facet at the junction of the lateral one third and medial two thirds with the freehand technique on cadavers. Here we measured the accuracy of thoracic pedicle screw placement (Chung et al. Int Orthop 2008) on post-operative computed tomography (CT) scans in 43 scoliosis patients who underwent operation with the freehand technique taking the same entry point. Of the 854 inserted screws, 268 (31.3%) were displaced; 88 (10.3%) and 180 (21.0%) screws were displaced medially and laterally, respectively. With regard to the safe zone, 795 screws were within the safe zone representing an accuracy rate of 93%; 448 and 406 thoracic screws inserted in adolescent idiopathic and neuromuscular scoliosis showed an accuracy of 89.9 and 94%, respectively (p = 0.6475). The accuracy rate of screws inserted in the upper, middle and lower thoracic pedicles were 94.2, 91.6 and 93.7%, respectively (p = 0.2411). The results indicate that IPEP should be considered by surgeons during thoracic pedicle screw instrumentation.
PMCID: PMC2899059  PMID: 18357448

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