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Bone Joint Res. 2012 Jun 1;1(6):111-7. doi: 10.1302/2046-3758.16.2000008. Print 2012 Jun.

Characteristics of two different locking compression plates in the volar fixation of complex articular distal radius fractures.

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  • 1BG Trauma Centre Ludwigshafen, Ludwig-Guttmann-Str. 13, D - 67071 Ludwigshafen, Germany.



To investigate the differences of open reduction and internal fixation (ORIF) of complex AO Type C distal radius fractures between two different models of a single implant type.


A total of 136 patients who received either a 2.4 mm (n = 61) or 3.5 mm (n = 75) distal radius locking compression plate (LCP DR) using a volar approach were followed over two years. The main outcome measurements included motion, grip strength, pain, and the scores of Gartland and Werley, the Short-Form 36 (SF-36) and the Disabilities of the Arm, Shoulder, and Hand (DASH). Differences between the treatment groups were evaluated using regression analysis and the likelihood ratio test with significance based on the Bonferroni corrected p-value of < 0.003.


The groups were similar with respect to baseline and injury characteristics as well as general surgical details. The risk of experiencing a complication after ORIF with a LCP DR 2.4 mm was 18% (n = 11) compared with 11% (n = 8) after receiving a LCP DR 3.5 mm (p = 0.45). Wrist function was also similar between the cohorts based on the mean ranges of movement (all p > 0.052) and grip strength measurements relative to the contralateral healthy side (p = 0.583). In addition, DASH and SF-36 component scores as well as pain were not significantly different between the treatment groups throughout the two-year period (all p ≥ 0.005). No patient from either treatment group had a step-off > 2 mm.


Differences in plate design do not influence the overall final outcome of fracture fixation using LCP.


Comparative analysis; Distal radius fracture; LCP; Locking compression plate; ORIF; Open reduction and internal fixation

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