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Operative Technique and Management of Polydactyly

October 13, 2022

A study recently published in Knee Surgery, Sports Traumatology, Arthroscopy to discuss central foot polydactyly was conducted by several orthopaedic experts including UPMC Orthopaedic Care physician John R. Fowler, MD.

Polydactyly is characterized by the manifestation of supernumerary digits in the hands and feet. It can be isolated or associated with a genetic syndrome. Based on the location of duplication, it is categorized as preaxial, postaxial, or central. The latter is a rare abnormality, comprising approximately 6% of cases.

There is a paucity in the literature regarding this congenital anomaly and its overall management. Nonoperative treatment is generally unsuccessful in managing symptoms such as excessive width, abnormal digit alignment, and growth.

Though surgical management addresses the individual patient's needs, general goals include preservation of digits with the greatest axial alignment, resection of symptomatic digits, alignment correction of the remaining great toe, stabilization of the soft tissues, and adequate soft tissue coverage.

This study aims to delineate effective operative techniques for central foot polydactyly. Two patient cases are discussed, providing a framework for pre and postoperative care, complications, and outcomes. The techniques detailed offer a straightforward, efficacious, and safe method to reconstruct central foot polydactyly, returning form and function to the patient.

Read more about this study on PubMed.

Other study authors include: