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Acta Orthop Scand. 1990 Oct;61(5):453-6.

Cast or external fixation for fracture of the distal radius. A prospective study of 126 cases.

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  • 1Department of Orthopedics, Rambam Medical Center, Technion Faculty of Medicine, Bat-Galim, Haifa, Israel.


In a prospective 4-year study, 126 consecutive patients with a fracture of the distal radius were followed. Functional, anatomic, and radiographic final results of fixation with above-the-elbow cast immobilization were compared with the results obtained with external fixation. The results following external fixation of comminuted intraarticular fractures were better than those of similar fractures treated in a cast. Aged osteoporotic patients tolerated better residual deformities, and the clinical results had a relatively low correlation with the final anatomic alignment. We suggest that extraarticular fractures of the distal radius should be treated with cast immobilization. Comminuted intraarticular fractures of the distal radius should be treated with external fixation, which maintains accurate anatomic position until solid fracture healing is achieved.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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