International Orthopaedics

, Volume 42, Issue 5, pp 1157–1164 | Cite as

Double-level bone transport for large post-traumatic tibial bone defects: a single centre experience of sixteen cases

  • Yanlong Zhang
  • Yong Wang
  • Jun Di
  • Aqin Peng
Original Paper



The aim of this study was to evaluate the clinical and functional outcomes of patients with large post-traumatic tibial bone defects managed by double-level bone transport using the Ilizarov technique.


We retrospectively reviewed 16 patients of 39.1 years (range, 16.0–65.0 years). The bone defects averaged 10.9 ± 3.8 cm (range: 6.0 cm–20.0 cm) after radical resection and were managed by double-level bone transport. Bone and functional results were evaluated according to the ASAMI criteria.


The mean duration of follow-up after frame removal was 29.5 ± 1.8 months (range, 12.0–36.0 months). All patients achieved complete union in both the regenerates and the docking site and eradication of infection. The mean bone transport time was 55.6 ± 23.7 days (range, 30.0–125.0 days). The mean external fixation time was 12.0 ± 3.9 months (range, 5.0–18.0 months), and the mean external fixation index was 1.1 ± 0.3 months/cm (rang, 0.8–2.0 months/cm). The bone results were excellent in ten patients and poor in six patients. The functional results were excellent in 12 patients and good in four patients.


Double-level bone transport is a safe, reliable, and successful method for large post-traumatic tibial bone defects. Furthermore, this technique can reduce bone transport time, time in frame, and total treatment time in one stage.


Bone transport Bone defects External fixation Ilizarov technique Tibia 



This study has received funding from Science and Technology Plan Program of Hebei Province (grant number 14277745D).

Compliance with ethical standards

All procedures performed in studies involving human participants were in accordance with the ethical standards of the institutional and/or national research committee and with the 1964 Helsinki declaration and its later amendments or comparable ethical standards.

Conflict of interest

All authors declare no conflict of interest.


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Copyright information

© SICOT aisbl 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Orthopaedic SurgeryThe Third Hospital of Hebei Medical UniversityShijiazhuangPeople’s Republic of China
  2. 2.Key Laboratory of Biomechanics of Hebei ProvinceShijiazhuangPeople’s Republic of China

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