Pediatric open elbow dislocation without fracture: A case report

Gökhan Polat, Gökhan Karademir, Turgut Akgül, Hasan Hüseyin Ceylan
International Journal of Surgery Case Reports 2014, 5 (12): 1064-7

INTRODUCTION: Elbow dislocations in children are rare injuries. These injuries are often in the form of complex injuries that is accompanied by the median nerve damage and medial epicondyle fracture in the pediatric age group. Open elbow dislocation without fracture in the pediatric age group has been reported very rarely in the literature.

PRESENTATION OF CASE: The purpose of this study is to present an 8-year-old patient who has open elbow dislocation without fracture accompanying with brachial artery injury. In the clinical examination of the patient, there was an open wound in the transverse antecubital region. After repair of brachial artery injury, open reduction was performed under general anesthesia. In the postoperative clinical examination at 6 months, left elbow flexion was 140°, extension was full and there were no deficit in the supination and pronation of the forearm.

DISCUSSION: Elbow dislocation without fracture in pediatric patients is a very rare injury. Usually the trauma mechanism of elbow dislocation is falling on outstretched hand with elbow in approximately 30° of flexion. However our patient had fallen on outstretched hand with elbow in full extension. Although this type of trauma mechanism is typical for supracondylar humerus fractures in pediatric age group, in our patient an open posterior elbow dislocation without fracture had occurred.

CONCLUSION: Pediatric elbow dislocations are rare injuries and the management of these injuries can be technically demanding due to concurrent neurovascular injuries. An open dislocation without fracture is very rare and it should be treated with immediate intervention, an effective teamwork and good rehabilitation.

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