International Orthopaedics

, Volume 34, Issue 4, pp 571–576 | Cite as

Nailing versus plating in humerus shaft fractures: A prospective comparative study

Original Paper


There is a debate about the choice of operative intervention in humerus shaft fractures requiring surgical intervention. A prospective, comparative study of management of acute humeral shaft fractures treated by antegrade interlocking nail fixation and dynamic compression plating was undertaken over a period of three years. Twenty patients of interlocking nailing and sixteen patients of plating were included after considering the inclusion and exclusion criteria. Functional scoring criteria were used for postoperative assessment and the average follow-up period was one year. A higher rate of excellent and good results and a tendency for earlier union was seen with the plating group in our series.


  1. 1.
    An Z, Zeng B, He X, Chen Q, Hu S (2009) Plating osteosynthesis of mid-distal humeral shaft fractures: minimally invasive versus conventional open reduction technique. Int Orthop Epub Mar 20Google Scholar
  2. 2.
    Bell MJ, Beauchamp CG, Kellam JK, McMurtry RY (1985) The results of plating humeral shaft fractures in patients with multiple injuries. The Sunnybrook experience. J Bone Joint Surg Br 67(2):293–296Google Scholar
  3. 3.
    Bhandari M, Devereaux PJ, McKee MD, Schemitsch EH (2006) Compression plating versus intramedullary nailing of humeral shaft fractures—a meta-analysis. Acta Orthop 77(2):279–284CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  4. 4.
    Brumback RJ, Bosse MJ, Poka A, Burgess AR (1986) Intramedullary stabilization of humeral shaft fractures in patients with multiple trauma. J Bone Joint Surg Am 68(7):960–970PubMedGoogle Scholar
  5. 5.
    Chao TC, Chou WY, Chung JC, Hsu CJ (2005) Humeral shaft fractures treated by dynamic compression plates, Ender nails and interlocking nails. Int Orthop 29(2):88–91CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  6. 6.
    Changulani M, Jain UK, Keswani T (2007) Comparison of the use of the humerus intramedullary nail and dynamic compression plate for the management of diaphyseal fractures of the humerus. A randomised controlled study. Int Orthop 31(3):391–395CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  7. 7.
    Chapman JR, Henley MB, Agel J, Benca PJ (2000) Randomized prospective study of humeral shaft fracture fixation: Intramedullary nails versus plates. J Orthop Trauma 14:162–166CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  8. 8.
    Foster RJ, Dixon GL Jr, Bach AW, Appleyard RW, Green TM (1985) Internal fixation of fractures and non-unions of the humeral shaft. Indications and results in a multi-center study. J Bone Joint Surg Am 67(6):857–864PubMedGoogle Scholar
  9. 9.
    Hall RF Jr, Pankovich AM (1987) Ender nailing of acute fractures of the humerus. A study of closed fixation by intramedullary nails without reaming. J Bone Joint Surg Am 69(4):558–567PubMedGoogle Scholar
  10. 10.
    Ji F, Tong D, Tang H, Cai X, Zhang Q, Li J, Wang Q (2009) Minimally invasive percutaneous plate osteosynthesis (MIPPO) technique applied in the treatment of humeral shaft distal fractures through a lateral approach. Int Orthop 33(2):543–547CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  11. 11.
    Klenerman L (1966) Fractures of the shaft of the humerus. J Bone Joint Surg Br 48(1):105–111PubMedGoogle Scholar
  12. 12.
    Livani B, Belangero W, Andrade K, Zuiani G, Pratali R (2008) Is MIPO in humeral shaft fractures really safe? Postoperative ultrasonographic evaluation. Int Orthop Epub Aug 13Google Scholar
  13. 13.
    McCormack RG, Brien D, Buckley RE, McKee MD, Powell J, Schemitsch EH (2000) Fixation of fractures of the shaft of the humerus by dynamic compression plate or intramedullary nail: A prospective randomized trial. J Bone Joint Surg Br 82(3):336–339CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  14. 14.
    Pollock FH, Drake D, Bovill EG, Day L, Trafton PG (1981) Treatment of radial neuropathy associated with fractures of the humerus. J Bone Joint Surg Am 63(2):239–243PubMedGoogle Scholar
  15. 15.
    Raghavendra S, Bhalodiya HP (2007) Internal fixation of fractures of the shaft of the humerus by dynamic compression plate or intramedullary nail: A prospective study. Indian J Orthop 41(3):214–218CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  16. 16.
    Rodríguez-Merchán EC (1995) Compression plating versus Hackethal nailing in closed humeral shaft fractures failing nonoperative reduction. J Orthop Trauma 9(3):194–197PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  17. 17.
    Stern PJ, Mattingly DA, Pomeroy DL, Zenni EJ Jr, Kreig JK (1984) Intramedullary fixation of humeral shaft fractures. J Bone Joint Surg Am 66(5):639–646PubMedGoogle Scholar
  18. 18.
    Sarmiento A, Kinman PB, Galvin EG, Schmitt RH, Phillips JG (1977) Functional bracing of fractures of the shaft of the humerus. J Bone Joint Surg Am 59A:596–601Google Scholar
  19. 19.
    Sarmiento A, Waddell JP, Latta LL (2002) Diaphyseal humeral fractures: Treatment options. Instr Course Lect 51:257–269PubMedGoogle Scholar
  20. 20.
    Tsai CH, Fong YC, Chen YH, Hsu CJ, Chang CH, Hsu HC (2009) The epidemiology of traumatic humeral shaft fractures in Taiwan. Int Orthop 33(2):463–467CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 2009

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Trauma and Orthopaedics, University Hospital of North TeesStockton on TeesUnited Kingdom
  2. 2.Trauma and Orthopaedics, King George HospitalVisakhapatnamIndia

Personalised recommendations