World Journal of Surgery

, Volume 33, Issue 1, pp 14–22 | Cite as

Rib Fracture Repair: Indications, Technical Issues, and Future Directions

  • Raminder Nirula
  • Jose J. DiazJr.
  • Donald D. Trunkey
  • John C. MayberryEmail author


Rib fracture repair has been performed at selected centers around the world for more than 50 years; however, the operative indications have not been established and are considered controversial. The outcome of a strictly nonoperative approach may not be optimal. Potential indications for rib fracture repair include flail chest, painful, movable rib fractures refractory to conventional pain management, chest wall deformity/defect, rib fracture nonunion, and during thoracotomy for other traumatic indication. Rib fracture repair is technically challenging secondary to the human rib’s relatively thin cortex and its tendency to fracture obliquely. Nonetheless, several effective repair systems have been developed. Future directions for progress on this important surgical problem include the development of minimally invasive techniques and the conduct of multicenter, randomized trials.


Chest Wall Intercostal Nerve Absorbable Plate Pulmonary Contusion Surgical Fixation 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


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Copyright information

© Société Internationale de Chirurgie 2008

Authors and Affiliations

  • Raminder Nirula
    • 1
  • Jose J. DiazJr.
    • 2
  • Donald D. Trunkey
    • 3
  • John C. Mayberry
    • 3
    Email author
  1. 1.Surgery, Burns/Trauma/Critical Care SectionUniversity of UtahSaltlake CityUSA
  2. 2.Surgery, Division of Trauma, Emergency General Surgery, and Surgical Critical CareVanderbilt UniversityNashvilleUSA
  3. 3.Department of SurgeryOregon Health & Science UniversityPortlandUSA

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