Su-Min Son, Il-Hyung Park, Chang-Wug Oh, Hyun-Joo Lee, Byung-Chul Park, Je-Yong Choi
Epiphyseal stapling has been widely used to correct angular deformity. The mechanism, however, has not been well determined. To determine the effect of temporary hemiepiphyseal stapling on the cellular layers of the physis, a histomorphometric study was performed using immature rabbits. Distal lateral epiphyseal stapling of the right femur was performed on 6-week-old New Zealand white rabbits. Thirty rabbits were randomly assigned to five groups, and six rabbits in each group were analyzed weekly for up to 5 weeks. The distal femur was deformed into the valgus, and the anatomical lateral distal femoral angle decreased with the passage of time. In the sequential histomorphometry of the operated physeal plate, the area ratio of each layer, compared to the control side, decreased every week. The total area of the physeal plate had decreased up to 60 % at the 5th week compared to the area of the 1st week, and the area of the proliferative layer decreased by the greatest amount among the three layers. Our findings suggest that the proliferation of chondrocytes seemed to be more suppressed by the compression of the stapling, thereby slowing the growth rate, although hypertrophy of the chondrocytes was also suppressed.