08.01.2021 | Hot Topics | Ausgabe 1/2021
Tibial Torsion and Patellofemoral Pain and Instability in the Adult Population: Current Concept Review
Current Reviews in Musculoskeletal Medicine
- Martyn Snow
Purpose of review
Tibial torsion is a recognized cause of patellofemoral pain and instability in the paediatric population; however, it is commonly overlooked in the adult population. The aim of this review article is to summarize the current best evidence on tibial torsion for the adult orthopaedic surgeon.
The true incidence of tibial torsion in the adult population is unknown, with significant geographical variations making assessment very difficult. CT currently remains the gold standard for quantitatively assessing the level of tibial torsion and allows assessment of any associated femoral and knee joint rotational anomalies. Surgical correction should only be considered after completion of a course of physiotherapy aimed at addressing the associated proximal and gluteal weakness. Tibial torsion greater than 30° is used as the main indicator for tibial de-rotation osteotomy by the majority of authors. In patients with associated abnormal femoral rotation, current evidence would suggest that a single-level correction of the tibia (if considered to be a dominant deformity) is sufficient in the majority of cases. Proximal de-rotational osteotomy has been more commonly reported in the adult population and confers the advantage of allowing simultaneous correction of patella alta or excessive tubercle lateralization. Previous surgery prior to de-rotational osteotomy is common; however, in patients with persistent symptoms surgical correction still provides significant benefit.
Tibial torsion persists into adulthood and can play a significant role in patellofemoral pathology. A high index of suspicion is required in order to identify torsion clinically. Surgical correction is effective for both pain and instability, but results are inferior in patients with very high pain levels pre-surgery and multiple previous surgeries.