The treatment of supracondylar femoral fractures in the past three decades has evolved from non-operative to operative treatment. While operative fixation utilizing either plate fixation or rigid intramedullary nail fixation has improved patient outcomes, the problems of malunion, nonunion, need for bone grafting, joint stiffness, and infection persist. An emphasis on maintenance of the soft tissue envelope around fractures has improved efficacy in increasing osseous healing and decreasing infection. Out of this movement grew the concept of submuscular plating for distal femoral fractures, and subsequently L.I.S.S. fixation (Less Invasive Stabilization System) for distal femoral fractures. The technique and early results utilizing the L.I.S.S. for distal femoral fractures is described. The technique of L.I.S.S. fixation first begins with traditional direct visualization and internal fixation of the articular surface. Closed reduction is then performed on the metaphyseal / diaphyseal component of the fracture, followed by submuscular fixation utilizing the L.I.S.S. fixation. The L.I.S.S. can best be thought as an "internal" external fixator.
- Articular fracture
- Internal fixation