JOURNAL ARTICLE

[Effectiveness of pronator quadratus muscle sparing in volar plate fixation for unstable distal radius fracture in adults]

Xiaolin Liu, Hui Ye, Jinxing Shi
Chinese Journal of Reparative and Reconstructive Surgery 2020 July 15, 34 (7): 814-819
32666721

Objective: To investigate the effectiveness of pronator quadratus muscle sparing in volar plate fixation for unstable distal radius fracture in adults.

Methods: The clinical data of 62 cases of unstable distal radius fractures between January 2017 and December 2018 were retrospectively analyzed. According to the different methods of intraoperative exposure, the patients were divided into the observe group (28 cases with the pronator quadratus muscle sparing surgery) and the control group (32 cases with cutting the pronator quadratus muscle in operation and repairing it after volar plate fixation). There was no significant difference in general data such as gender, age, handedness, cause of injury, fracture classification, time from injury to operation, visual analogue scale (VAS) score, and range of motion (ROM) of wrist (flexion, extension, pronation, and supination) before operation between the two groups ( P >0.05). The operation time, intraoperative blood loss, postoperative hospital stay, fracture healing time, and postoperative complications were recorded and compared between the two groups. VAS score and ROM of wrist of two groups before operation and at 3 days and 3 months after operation were calculated and compared. The wrist function was evaluated according to the Krimmer evaluation criteria at 6 months after operation.

Results: There was no significant difference in operation time and intraoperative blood loss between the two groups ( P >0.05). The postoperative hospital stay and fracture healing time of the observe group were significantly shorter than those of the control group ( P <0.05). Patients in both groups were followed up 6-30 months, with an average of 13 months. The VAS score and ROM of wrist of the observe group at 3 days after operation were superior to the control group ( P <0.05), but there was no significant difference between the two groups at 3 months after operation ( P >0.05). At 6 months after operation, according to Krimmer evaluation criteria, the wrist function of the observe group was excellent in 21 cases and good in 7 cases, with an excellent and good rate of 100%; and the wrist function of the control group was excellent in 22 cases, good in 11 cases, and fair in 1 case, with an excellent and good rate of 97.1%. There was no significant difference in wrist function between the two groups ( χ 2 =1.344, P =0.511). One case of poor incision healing occurred in the observe group, and 7 cases of poor incision healing and 5 cases of tendon pain occurred in the control group after operation. The incidence of postoperative complications was less in the observe group (3.6%) than in the control group (35.3%) ( χ 2 =9.325, P =0.002).

Conclusion: It is feasible of the pronator quadratus muscle sparing in the volar plate fixation for unstable distal radius fracture in adults. It is beneficial to recover wrist function early after operation, reduce postoperative complications, shorten the length of hospitalization, protect the soft tissue of fracture site, and promote fracture healing.

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