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Int Orthop. 2011 Mar;35(3):425-32. doi: 10.1007/s00264-010-1015-7. Epub 2010 Apr 25.

Second generation locked plating of proximal humerus fractures--a prospective multicentre observational study.

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  • 1Department of Orthopaedic Trauma, University of Ulm, Ulm, Germany.


Surgical treatment of most displaced proximal humerus fractures is challenging due to osteoporosis. Locking plates are intended to provide superior mechanical stability. In a prospective multicentre study 131 patients were treated with second generation locked plating (NCB-PH, Zimmer, Inc.). The open procedure (n = 78) was performed using a deltopectoral approach; the minimally invasive technique (n = 53) involved percutaneous reduction and an anterolateral deltoid split approach. Clinical and radiological follow-up was obtained. Improvement in function (ROM) was statistically significant. Fracture type (AO) had the most significant impact on the incidence of complications. The most frequent complications detected were intra-articular screw perforation (15%) and secondary displacement (8%). Complication rate and functional outcome of the NCB-PH are comparable to reports in the literature. Not all problems are likely to be solved by this new generation of implants, i.e. secondary dislocation still occurred in 8% of our patients.

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