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Surgical management of renal cancer metastasis in the humerus: novel use of a trabecular metal spacer
  1. Oluwatobi O Onafowokan,
  2. Somen Agrawal,
  3. Rory G Middleton and
  4. Gavin E Bartlett
  1. Department of Orthopaedic Surgery, Royal Cornwall Hospitals NHS Trust, Truro, UK
  1. Correspondence to Oluwatobi O Onafowokan; tonafowokan7{at}


Humeral metastases from renal cell carcinoma are not uncommon. Current surgical practice centres around adequate tumour resection, but often at the expense of functional outcome. The use of trabecular metal (TM) implants is well described in spine and joint surgery. However, their use as a reconstruction device in osseous tumour surgery has yet to be reported. We present our experience in using a TM vertebral body replacement device (VBR) in treating a patient with painful bilateral diaphyseal humeral metastases. Resection of the tumour resulted in defects which the TM-VBR was able to fill. The defect was then bridged with a locking plate and cables. At 2-year clinical and radiographic review, bony integration and a return to pain free, near-normal function was achieved.

  • orthopaedics
  • urological cancer
  • cancer intervention
  • musculoskeletal and joint disorders
  • orthopaedic and trauma surgery

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  • Contributors OOO and SA planned, drafted and modified the initial manuscript. RGM and GEB were the operating surgeons and were involved in revisions of the manuscript. All authors are accountable for the article submitted.

  • Funding The authors have not declared a specific grant for this research from any funding agency in the public, commercial or not-for-profit sectors.

  • Case reports provide a valuable learning resource for the scientific community and can indicate areas of interest for future research. They should not be used in isolation to guide treatment choices or public health policy.

  • Competing interests None declared.

  • Provenance and peer review Not commissioned; externally peer reviewed.