Repair of Tibial Nonunion
While most tibial fractures can be successfully treated using either surgical or nonsurgical techniques, nonunions can occur in up to 10 percent of patients, in which the bone does not heal and causes pain, swelling and physical deformity. This most often occurs when there is not a healthy blood supply to the fractured area of the bone.
Treatment for a tibial nonunion depends on each patient’s individual condition, but usually involves surgery to restore stability and healthy tissue within the affected area. This may involves the use of a rod, plate or screws to hold the bone in place, or a bone graft to bring in healthy cells and stimulate bone growth. If there is an infection in the area, it must be removed in order for proper healing to occur. Your doctor will decide which treatment is best based on your individual condition.
Patients can help prevent a nonunion by avoiding smoking, eating well and strictly following their doctor’s instructions during the initial treatment.