5 years ago

Anatomic stabilization techniques provide superior results in terms of functional outcome in patients suffering from chronic ankle instability compared to non-anatomic techniques

C. N. van Dijk, H. Pereira, G. Vuurberg, L. Blankevoort



To determine the best surgical treatment for chronic ankle instability (CAI) a systematic review was performed to compare the functional outcomes between various surgical stabilization methods.


A systematic search was performed from 1950 up to April 2016 using PubMed, EMBASE, Medline and the Cochrane Library. Inclusion criteria were a minimum age of 18 years, persistent lateral ankle instability, treatment by some form of surgical stabilization, described functional outcome measures. Exclusion criteria were case reports, (systematic) reviews, articles not published in English, description of only acute instability or only conservative treatment, medial ankle instability and concomitant injuries, deformities or previous surgical treatment for ankle instability. After inclusion, studies were critically appraised using the Modified Coleman Methodology Score.


The search resulted in a total of 19 articles, including 882 patients, which were included in this review. The Modified Coleman Methodology Score ranged from 30 to 73 points on a scale from 0 to 90 points. The AOFAS and Karlsson Score were the most commonly used patient-reported outcome measures to assess functional outcome after surgery. Anatomic repair showed the highest post-operative scores [AOFAS 93.8 (SD ± 2.7; n = 119); Karlsson 95.1 (SD ± 3.6, n = 121)], compared to anatomic reconstruction [AOFAS 90.2 (SD ± 10.9, n = 128); Karlsson 90.1 (SD ± 7.8, n = 35)] and tenodesis [AOFAS 86.5 (SD ± 12.0, n = 10); Karlsson 85.3 (SD ± 2.5, n = 39)]. Anatomic reconstruction showed the highest score increase after surgery (AOFAS 37.0 (SD ± 6.8, n = 128); Karlsson 51.6 (SD ± 5.5, n = 35) compared to anatomic repair [AOFAS 31.8 (SD ± 5.3, n = 119); Karlsson 40.9 (SD ± 2.9, n = 121)] and tenodesis [AOFAS 19.5 (SD ± 13.7, n = 10); Karlsson 29.4 (SD ± 6.3, n = 39)] (p < 0.005).


Anatomic reconstruction and anatomic repair provide better functional outcome after surgical treatment of patients with CAI compared to tenodesis reconstruction. These results further discourage the use of tenodesis reconstruction and other non-anatomic surgical techniques. Future studies may be required to indicate potential value of tenodesis reconstruction when used as a salvage procedure. Not optimal, but the latter still provides an increase in functional outcome post-operatively. Anatomic reconstruction seems to give the best results, but may be more invasive than anatomic repair. This has to be kept in mind when choosing between reconstruction and repair in the treatment of CAI.

Level of evidence


Publisher URL: https://link.springer.com/article/10.1007/s00167-017-4730-4

DOI: 10.1007/s00167-017-4730-4

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