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Keywords:

  • computer-assisted surgery;
  • distal phalanx fracture;
  • osteosynthesis;
  • screw placement;
  • screw length determination.

Objectives— To compare the precision obtained with computer-assisted screw insertion for treatment of mid-sagittal articular fractures of the distal phalanx (P3) with results achieved with a conventional technique.

Study Design— In vitro experimental study.

Sample Population— Thirty-two cadaveric equine limbs.

Methods— Four groups of 8 limbs were studied. Either 1 or 2 screws were inserted perpendicular to an imaginary axial fracture of P3 using computer-assisted surgery (CAS) or conventional technique. Screw insertion time, predetermined screw length, inserted screw length, fit of the screw, and errors in placement were recorded.

Results— CAS technique took 15–20 minutes longer but resulted in greater precision of screw length and placement compared with the conventional technique.

Conclusion— Improved precision in screw insertion with CAS makes insertion of 2 screws possible for repair of mid-sagittal P3 fractures.

Clinical Relevance— CAS although expensive improves precision in screw insertion into P3 and consequently should yield improved clinical outcome.