We introduced a palliative joint-preserving surgery using proximal self-locking screws of intramedullary (IM) nail and percutaneous cementoplasty (PC) in patients with proximal humeral metastases, including the head and neck, and evaluated the outcome of the surgical method.
Twenty-three patients (mean age = 63.0 ± 11.8 years, M:F = 14:9) had IM nailing with a self-locking screw system and PC for the treatment of humeral head and neck metastases. Usually, three proximal locking screws were inserted after IM nailing, and 20.9 ± 8.0 ml of polymethylmethacrylate (PMMA) bone cement was injected in the perimetal osteolytic area.
Regional anesthesia with interscalene block was performed in 87.0% (20/23), and the duration of surgery (from anesthesia to awakening) was approximately 40–55 min. Red blood cell was not transfused intra- and/or postoperatively in 65.2% (15/23). The localized preoperative pain (visual analog scale (VAS), 8.2 ± 3.1) was gradually decreased at postoperative 1 week (VAS, 4.9 ± 2.1) and at 6 weeks (VAS, 2.9 ± 2.1) (P < 0.001). Among nine patients who underwent F-18-FDG PET/CT, the proximal humeral metastasis around PC showed improved, stable, and aggravated states in five (55.6%), three (33.3%), and one patient (11.1%), respectively. Meanwhile, 88.8% (8/9) of patients showed aggravation at the naive bone metastasis area.
The selection of the self-locking screw type of the IM nail and PC was helpful in preventing fixation failure for joint-preserving palliative surgery in the proximal humeral metastasis.