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ORIGINAL ARTICLE
Year : 2012  |  Volume : 46  |  Issue : 1  |  Page : 36-45

Conservatively treated acetabular fractures: A retrospective analysis


Department of Orthopaedic Surgery, Paraplegia and Rehabilitation, Pt. B. D. Sharma PGIMS, Rohtak, Haryana, India

Correspondence Address:
Narender Kumar Magu
Senior Professor, 22/8 FM, Medical Enclave, PGIMS, Rohtak - 124 001, Haryana
India
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None


DOI: 10.4103/0019-5413.91633

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Background: There are a few studies reporting the long term outcome of conservatively treated acetabular fractures. The present study aims to evaluate the quality of reduction, and radiological and functional outcome in displaced acetabular fractures treated conservatively. Materials and Methods: Sixty-nine patients (55 men and 14 women) with 71 displaced acetabular fractures (mean age 38.6 years) managed conservatively were retrospectively evaluated. There were 11 posterior wall, 5 posterior column, 6 anterior column, 13 transverse, 2 posterior column with posterior wall, 9 transverse with posterior wall, 6 T-shaped, 1 anterior column with posterior hemi-transverse, and 18 both-column fractures. The follow-up radiographs were graded according to the criteria developed by Matta J. Functional outcome was assessed using Harris hip score and Merle d'Aubigne and Postel score at final followup. Average follow-up was 4.34 years (range 2-11 years). Results: Patients with congruent reduction (n=45) had good or excellent functional outcome. Radiologic outcome in incongruent reduction (n=26) was good or excellent in 6 and fair or poor in 20 hips. The functional outcome in patients with incongruent reduction was good or excellent in 16 and satisfactory or poor in 10 hips. Good to excellent radiologic and functional outcome was achieved in all patients with posterior wall fractures including four having more than 50% of broken wall. Good to excellent functional outcome was observed in 88.8% of both-column fractures with secondary congruence despite medial subluxation. Conclusions: Nonoperative treatment of acetabular fractures can give good radiological and functional outcome in congruent reduction. Posterior wall fractures with a congruous joint without subluxation on computed tomography axial section, posterior column, anterior column, infratectal transverse or T-shaped, and both-column fractures may be managed conservatively. Small osteochondral fragments in the cotyloid fossa or non-weight-bearing part of the hip with a congruous joint do not seem to adversely affect the functional outcome. Displaced transverse fractures with "V" sign may require operative treatment.


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