Authors of section


Matthias Hansen, Rodrigo Pesántez

Executive Editors

Joseph Schatzker, Ernst Raaymakers, Rick Buckley

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Medial/posteromedial approach to the proximal tibia

1. Principles

Patient positioning
If the patient’s hip is normal, position the patient supine, abduct and externally rotate the leg and put it in a figure of 4 position. If the hip is stiff position the patient in a lateral decubitus with the involved limb down.

2. Skin incision

With the knee in slight flexion make a straight or slightly curved incision running from the medial epicondyle towards the posteromedial edge of the tibia. The incision can be extended as needed both proximally and distally as indicated by the dashed line.

medialposteromedial approach

Clinical image of the skin incision for the postero-medial approach.

medialposteromedial approach

3. Deep dissection

After opening of the fascia identity and expose the pes anserinus.

medialposteromedial approach

4. Access

Access to the medial edge of the tibia plateau
Retract the pes anteriorly and the gastrocnemius posteriorly and distally. Identify the medial edge of the tibial plateau.

medialposteromedial approach

Opening of the knee joint
Identify the meniscus and incise the capsule between the meniscus and the edge of the tibial plateau thus gaining access to the knee joint.

medialposteromedial approach

Exposure of the anteromedial part (medial column) of proximal tibia is possible by a subcutaneous dissecting anteriorly. The pes can be retracted posteriorly when dealing with the fracture in this part

Clinical picture showing medial plateau and medial meniscus, pes anserinus, and distally the gastrosoleus.

medialposteromedial approach

5. Wound closure

Close the capsule. If needed insert suction drains and close the soft tissues in a routine manner.

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