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Title: Locking versus non-locking one-third tubular plates for treating osteoporotic distal fibula fractures: a comparative study
Authors: Herrera Pérez, M.U.
Gutiérrez-Morales, M.J.
Guerra-Ferraz, A.
Pais-Brito, J.L
Boluda-Mengod, J. 
Garcés Martín, Gerardo 
UNESCO Clasification: 3213 Cirugía
321315 Traumatología
2406 Biofísica
240604 Biomecánica
Keywords: Ankle fracture
Distal fibula fractures
Locking Plates
Issue Date: 2017
Journal: Injury 
Abstract: Introduction Ankle fractures represent the third most common fracture in elderly patients, after hip and wrist fractures. Distal fibula fractures in this population are closely related to osteoporosis, which renders commonly used methods of internal fixation technically demanding and prone to failure. Currently there is a tendency to fix osteoporotic metaphyseal and epiphyseal fractures with locking plates. However, published accounts about the use of this technology in osteoporotic distal fibula fractures are scarc e. In this study we compare the results of two groups of patients who underwent surgery for these types of fracture, one group received locking and the other non-locking screws, both using one-third tubular plates. Methods Sixty-two patients, aged over 64 years, underwent surgery for osteoporotic distal fibula fractures between 2011 and 2014. Forty-five of them were stabilized with a non-locking plate and the remaining 17 with a locking plate fixation. Follow-up was performed at 4, 8, 12, 26, and 52 weeks. Results were assessed according to the AOFAS Ankle-Hindfoot Score and radiological criteria for consolidation. Results Average time to union and AOFAS scores at 6 and 12 months were similar in both groups, including for the individual categories: function, pain, mobility, and alignment. Only time until partial weight bearing was significantly lower in the locking plate group (4.69 ± 2.63 vs 7.77 ± 4.30, p = 0.03). The most common complications were wound dehiscence and superficial infection (two cases of both). Conclusions Both locking and conventional non-locking plates achieved similar treatment outcomes in this group of osteoporotic patients aged over 64. However, locking plates may offer more benefits in cases that have to take into account immobilization time and concomitant soft-tissue damage.
ISSN: 0020-1383
DOI: 10.1016/S0020-1383(17)30796-9
Source: IInjury-International Journal of the Care of the Injured [ISSN 0020-1383], v. 48 (S 6), p. S60-S65
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