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Article
April 1951

EXPERIMENTAL STUDY OF THE EFFECT OF PRESSURE ON THE HEALING OF BONE GRAFTS

Author Affiliations

ST. LOUIS
From the Department of Surgery, Washington University School of Medicine.

AMA Arch Surg. 1951;62(4):475-485. doi:10.1001/archsurg.1951.01250030483003
Abstract

THE QUESTION as to whether or not pressing the fragments together exerts a beneficial influence on the union of two apposed fragments of bone is one which has concerned orthopedic surgeons from time to time. In 1932 Key1 described a method for arthrodesing the knee in which the bone ends were positively pressed together and in which the pressure was maintained until the fragments were firmly united. It was believed that this resulted in more rapid union than had been obtained by any other method. The method has also been used by Charnley,2 who reported on a series of patients treated by positive pressure in which successful arthrodesis of the knee was obtained in an unusually short time.

The contact splint introduced by Eggers3 uses the tone of the muscles to maintain apposition of the fragments and actually to press them together. He believes that with the

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