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MINERVA ORTOPEDICA E TRAUMATOLOGICA

A Journal on Orthopedics and Traumatology


Official Journal of the Piedmontese-Ligurian-Lombard Society of Orthopedics and Traumatology
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Minerva Ortopedica e Traumatologica 2003 February;54(1):39-43

language: English

Popliteal artery injury, peroneal nerve neurapraxia and tibial nerve transection of the right knee, after an arthroscopic assisted anterior cruciate ligament reconstruction

Galanakis I. 1, Aligizakis A. 1, Giannoukas A. 2, Katsamouris A. 2, Katonis P. 1, Hadjipavlou A. 1

1 Orthopaedic Department, University of Crete, Heraklion, Greece
2 Department of Vascular Surgery, University of Crete, Heraklion, Greece


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The use of diagnostic and therapeutic arthroscopy in the management of injuries to the knee is becoming increasingly popular. Although the low rate of complications, this case report describes a combined injury of the popliteal artery with peroneal nerve neurapraxia and tibial nerve transection of the knee, having a popliteal entrapment syndrome, after arthroscopic procedure in a 29-year-old man. The ortho-paedic surgeon should be aware of this syndrome, which is disregarded and underdiagnosed. A careful clinical evaluation and a Doppler examination are essential for the diagnosis of this syndrome before any intervention about the knee joint is performed. Also maintaining the cutting tips of all instruments during arthroscopy in constant view avoids the mishap of extra-articular penetration causing neurovascular injuries. When they occur, early recognition and treatment with an aggressive multidisciplinary approach is required to retain function in the extremity. Immediate consultation with a vascular surgeon is mandatory and arteriography should be done. After vascular repair, an orthopaedic surgeon, specialized in microsurgery, should perform the nerve injury repair.

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