Morphometric Analysis of Distal Interphalangeal Joint and Implications for Arthrodesis With a Headless Compression Screw


Using radiographs of a cross section of patients, measurements of phalanges were done to aid in surgical planning for distal interphalangeal joint (DIPJ) arthrodesis using a headless compression screw. Measurements were performed of the distal and middle phalanx of all fingers and the proximal and distal phalanx of the thumb. Three independent reviewers measured 50 patients. The average measurements (in mm) of anteroposterior (AP) dimensions were as follows: for the thumb P1 and P2: 5.7 and 5.5, lateral 4.2 and 3.5; for the index P2 and P3 AP: 4.2 and 3.3, lateral 2.1 and 1.8; for the long P2 and P3 AP: 4.5 and 3.5, lateral 2.2 and 1.8; for the ring P2 and P3 AP: 4.3 and 3.1, lateral 1.8 and 1.7; and for the small P2 and P3 AP: 3.7 and 2.2, lateral 1.8 and 1.5. Careful surgical planning by measuring the involved digit and knowledge of screw size is paramount to avoid complications from DIPJ arthrodesis with a compression screw. (Journal of Surgical Orthopaedic Advances 24(1):5–11, 2015) Key words: arthrodesis, distal interphalangeal joint (DIPJ), headless compression screw, morphometric

Benjamin Braun, AB; Andrew Bogle, MD; and Ethan Wiesler, MD