Clinical and radiological outcomes of unstable proximal humeral fractures treated with a locking plate and fibular strut allograft
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To evaluate the clinical and radiological outcomes of unstable proximal humeral fractures (PHFs) treated with a locking plate and fibular strut allograft.
This study included 36 patients [7 men, 29 women; mean age, 68 years (range, 22–94 years)] with unstable PHFs with medial column disruption. All patients were treated with open reduction and internal fixation using a locking plate and fibular strut allograft. Post-operative assessment included clinical outcomes, shoulder range of motion, radiographic examination, and any complications. Post-operative radiological assessment including the humerus neck-shaft angle (NSA) and the humeral head height was performed.
At the mean two year follow-up visit, the mean American Shoulder and Elbow Society (ASES) and University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA) scores were 77 and 28, respectively. According to the UCLA rating scale, the result was excellent in six, good in 20, fair in six, and poor in four cases. According to the Paavolainen method, 31 patients had good results with an NSA of 130 ± 10°; three patients showed fair results with an NSA of 100–120°, and two patients experienced a poor result with an NSA of <100°. When calculating the humeral head height, the mean loss of reduction was measured as 1.6 mm (from 10.8 or 9.2 mm). Varus collapse and avascular necrosis of the humeral head was noted in two patients for each condition.
For unstable proximal humerus fractures, particularly in elderly patients with severe osteoporosis or in younger patients with a four-part fracture, locking plate fixation with a fibular strut allograft provided rigid medial support and showed satisfactory clinical and radiological outcomes.
KeywordsUnstable proximal humeral fracture Fibular strut allograft Locking plate
This study was approved by Daejeon St. Mary’s Hospital, no. DC10EISI0019.
Conflicts of interest
The authors report no conflicts of interest.
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