Screw placement in slipped upper femoral epiphysis: is good the enemy of better?
Introduction and aims A single hip screw is the recommended method of fixation for slipped upper femoral epiphysis (SUFE). Current practice favours the placement of the screw in the centre of the femoral head on both anteroposterior and lateral planes to avoid the risks of chondrolysis and avascular necrosis (AVN). We investigated the correlation between different positions of the screw in the femoral head and the prevalence of AVN, chondrolysis, late slippage and the time to epiphyseal closure. Methods The clinical notes and radiographs of 38 consecutive patients (61 hips) who underwent single screw fixation for SUFE were evaluated retrospectively with a mean follow-up of 36 months. Two-way ANOVA and the post hoc test was performed to analyse the correlation between the different variables and the outcome at the 5% level of significance. Results There were 16 acute slips, 18 chronic slips and ten acute-on-chronic slips. Seventeen slips were treated prophylactically. Mild slip was enco