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Injury. 2005 Oct;36(10):1185-9. Epub 2005 Jun 16.

The influence of displacement on shoulder function in patients with minimally displaced fractures of the greater tuberosity.

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1
University of Vienna Medical School, Department of Traumatology, Waehringer Guertel 18-20, A-1090 Vienna, Austria. patrick.platzer@akh-wien.ac.at

Abstract

INTRODUCTION:

There is little outcome data on functional results after non-operative treatment of greater tuberosity fractures, and no clear evidence in minimally displaced (1-5 mm) fractures of the greater tuberosity showing that the results of non-operative treatments are good enough. This study assesses the relationship between degree of displacement in non-operatively treated patients and shoulder function.

MATERIALS AND METHODS:

We evaluated the radiographs and function in 135 patients after non-operative treatment of minimally displaced (1-5 mm) fractures of the greater tuberosity at a mean time of 3.7 years (2-20 years) after injury. Shoulder function was assessed using the Vienna Shoulder Score (VSS), the Constant Score (CS) and the UCLA-Score.

RESULTS:

97% of the evaluated patients had good or excellent results. Patients with a displacement of more than 3 mm had slightly worse results compared to those with less displacement, but this was not statistically significant. Female patients had significantly better results than male patients, and patients in the eighth and ninth decade had significantly worse results compared to younger patients.

CONCLUSION:

We recommend non-operative treatment in all patients with minimally displaced fractures of the greater tuberosity, as most obtain very good results. The best results followed treatment with Gilchrist bandages or Mitella slings for 3 weeks, followed by intensive rehabilitation.

PMID:
15963996
DOI:
10.1016/j.injury.2005.02.018
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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