Knee Surgery, Sports Traumatology, Arthroscopy September 2017, Volume 25, Issue 9, pp 2818–2824

The intercondylar notch ceiling: an accurate reference for distal femoral resection in total knee arthroplasty for severely degenerated varus knees

Yue, B., Wang, J., Wang, Y. et al.


To measure the distance from the intercondylar ceiling to the lowest point of the medial and lateral femoral condyles in a healthy population so to obtain a clearly discernible and accurate landmark for proper distal femoral resection during total knee arthroplasty (TKA).



Three-dimensional models of the lower extremities of 100 healthy Chinese subjects were constructed using computed tomography scans. The distance between the distal surface of the medial femoral condyle and the intercondylar notch ceiling, in the direction of the femoral mechanical axis, was measured.



The mean distance from the distal surface of the medial femoral condyle to the intercondylar notch ceiling was 9.1 ± 1.4 and 8.2 ± 1.4 mm in male and female subjects, respectively. Interestingly, this distance did not differ significantly with varying sizes of the distal femur.



The intercondylar notch ceiling could be used as an accurate landmark to determine the proper distal femoral resection level during TKA. For the clinical relevance, the distal femoral bone cut should be at the level of the intercondylar notch ceiling when using the most of the current TKA prosthesis systems.

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