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ORIGINAL ARTICLE
Year : 2010  |  Volume : 44  |  Issue : 1  |  Page : 89-94

Outcome of Gartland type II and type III supracondylar fractures treated by Blount's technique


Department of Paediatric Orthopaedic Surgery, CHU Brabois, Children's Hospital, Rue du Morvan, F-54500, Vandoeuvre les Nancy, France

Correspondence Address:
Antoine de Gheldere
14 Rue De la Chapelle, 1367 Ramillies, Belgium

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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None


DOI: 10.4103/0019-5413.58612

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Background : According to some orthopedic surgeons, almost all supracondylar humerus fractures should be treated operatively by reduction and pinning. While according to others, closed reduction and immobolization should be used for Gartland type II and some type III fractures. However, the limit of this technique remains unclear. We present 74 patients with displaced extension-type supracondylar fractures treated by closed reduction and immobilization with a collar sling fixed to a cast around the wrist. The purpose of the study is to give a more precise limitation of this technique. Materials and Methods : Retrospective data acquisition of 74 patients with a Gartland type II or type III fractures treated by closed reduction and immobilization (Blount's technique) between January 2004 and December 2007 was done. The mean age was 6.3 years (range, 2-11). The mean time of follow-up was 6.5 months (range, 3-25). All open injuries and complex elbow fracture dislocations or T-condylar fractures were excluded from the study. All patients were evaluated with standardized anteroposterior and true lateral x-rays of the elbow, and Flynn criteria were used for functional assessment. Results : Gartland type II fractures had 94% good or excellent final results. Gartland type III fractures had 73% good or excellent final result. The Gartland type III outcome depended on the displacement. The fractures remained stable in 88% for the posterior displacement, and 58% for the posteromedial displacement. These displacements were mild. However, for the posterolaterally displaced fractures, only 36% were stable; 36% had a mild displacement and 27% had a major displacement. Conclusion : Pure posterior displacement is more stable than posteromedial displacement which is more stable than posterolaterally displaced fractures. This study suggests that Gartland type II and pure posterior or posteromedial displaced Gartland type III fractures can be treated by closed reduction and immobilization with success.


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