Hammertoes pp 85-101 | Cite as

Proximal Interphalangeal Joint Arthrodesis via Kirschner Wire Fixation

  • Michelle Butterworth


The end-to-end proximal interphalangeal joint arthrodesis has become the digital arthrodesis technique of choice. When performed properly, it produces a stable construct and affords for good long-term correction, high success rates, and satisfied patients. Traditionally, the preferred form of fixation of lesser digital arthrodesis was with a percutaneous Kirschner wire (k-wire). In recent years however, the number of fixation options for the correction of digital deformities has greatly expanded, mainly with internal implants. Advocates of these internal fixation devices claim that k-wire fixation has poor patient acceptance and has an increased risk for infection because of exposed wires. Although these internal fixation devices may have a higher patient acceptance rate, they have not been shown to have a higher fusion rate nor a higher patient satisfaction rate, and they are quite costly when compared to k-wires. The cost-effective solution is the buried k-wire. The k-wire can easily be transformed into an internal implant, so that there are increased patient acceptance and decreased risk of infection, and it still produces high fusion and success rates.


Hammertoes Digital Proximal interphalangeal joint Arthrodesis Kirschner wire (k-wire) Percutaneous k-wire Buried k-wire Toe joint Hammertoe syndrome 


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Copyright information

© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  • Michelle Butterworth
    • 1
  1. 1.Williamsburg Foot Center, Williamsburg Regional HospitalKingstreeUSA

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