JOURNAL ARTICLE

Surgical treatment of supracondylar humerus fractures in children

K Reising, H Schmal, M Kohr, K Kuminack, N P Südkamp, P C Strohm
Acta Chirurgiae Orthopaedicae et Traumatologiae Cechoslovaca 2011, 78 (6): 519-23
22217404

PURPOSE OF THE STUDY: Surgical techniques for the treatment of supracondylar fractures in children are repeatedly the subject of discussion. The aim of the present study was to compare experience with the technique of crossed Kirschner wires at our own hospital with current literature.

PATIENTS AND METHODS: In the period from 2000-2006 a total of 86 children aged 1.7 to 12.7 years were treated by means of crossed K-wire osteosynthesis. Follow up was conducted at an average of 32 months. Outcomes were evaluated based on von Laer's criteria.

RESULTS: Reported complications were migration of the K-wires in 7% of cases and secondary dislocation and re-operation in 4% of cases. Lesion of the radial nerve was diagnosed postoperatively in two cases. Hospital stay was 1.5 days on average. Postoperative immobilization in an upper arm splint and implant removal after 6 weeks on average. 57% of the children received physiotherapy during the course of treatment. Slight varization was found in 11% of children and an unsatisfactory range of motion in 13%. Satisfactory outcomes were recorded for 83% of patients.

CONCLUSION: K-wire osteosynthesis is associated with a low complication rate and continues to be a safe standard procedure for the stabilization of supracondylar humerus fractures. Key words: supracondylar humerus fracture, Kirschner wires, paediatric fractures.

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