Kirschner Wire Migration after the Treatment of Acromioclavicular Luxation for the Contralateral Shoulder - Case Report

Rev Bras Ortop (Sao Paulo). 2019 Apr;54(2):202-205. doi: 10.1016/j.rbo.2017.09.017. Epub 2019 Apr 15.


The use of metal wires, called Kirschner wires, is a simple and effective fixation method for the correction of shoulder fractures and of dislocations in orthopedic surgery. Wire migration during the postoperative follow-up is a possible complication of the procedure. The authors present the case of a 48-year-old male patient, a business administrator, who suffered a fall from his own height during a soccer match resulting in right shoulder trauma. The patient was treated at a specialized orthopedics and trauma hospital and was diagnosed with a grade V acromioclavicular dislocation. Four days after the trauma, the acromioclavicular dislocation was surgically treated using ligatures with anchor wires, coracoacromial ligament transfer, and fixation with Kirshner wires from the acromion to the clavicle. At the follow-up, 12 days after the surgical procedure, migration of the Kirschner wire to the acromion edge was identified. The patient was oriented to undergo another surgery to remove the Kirshner wire, due to the possibility of further migration; nonetheless, he refused the surgery. Nine months after the surgical treatment, the patient complained of pain on the left shoulder (contralateral side), difficulty to mobilize the shoulder, ecchymosis, and protrusion. Bilateral radiographs demonstrated that the Kirschner wire, originally from the right shoulder, was on the left side. The patient then underwent a successful surgery to remove the implant.

Keywords: acromioclavicular joint; bone wires; foreign-body migration; shoulder dislocation; shoulder joint.

Publication types

  • Case Reports