We describe a retrospective study that uses the Broström-type surgical procedure with modifications that augment deficient and torn ligaments with acellular human dermal grafts. At the onset of this study, the most prevalent dermal graft available to us was GraftJacket (Wright Medical Technology, Arlington, Tennessee). Greater than 50% of the study participants were grafted with this product, but more recently other equally effective human dermal grafts have been used with no apparent difference.
Thirty-five lateral ankle stabilization procedures were performed in the past 6 years on 33 patients. Eight patients were considered athletes (mean age, 23 years). The balance of the study group consisted of sedentary patients (mean age, 41 years). The mean patient body mass index (calculated as the weight in kilograms divided by the square of the height in meters) was 31.
All of the patients were satisfied with their results, with no recurrent instability. Two patients in this group went on to have contralateral ankle stabilization in a similar manner owing to their satisfaction. Complications included two soft-tissue infections.
Lateral ankle stabilization using acellular human dermal graft augmentation is a useful tool in the surgical treatment of ankle instability. This procedure offers distinct advantages over traditional methods of ankle repair and can be performed with relatively limited surgical exposure. Ease of operation, consistent results, and limited patient morbidity should allow surgeons to use this procedure independently or adjunctively to improve surgical outcomes.