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The shaft fractures of the radius and ulna in children: current concepts

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The incidence of forearm shaft fractures in children has increased in recent years. They are challenging to treat and they can result in several long-lasting complications. The treatment of children’s fractures needs to be individualized to their needs. Nonoperative care will be satisfactory for young, preschool children and it is primarily treatment in stable fractures of children at every age. Injury mechanism must be understood to perform appropriate closed reduction. Immobilization using a long-arm cast needs to be focused against the deforming muscle forces – in particular those that rotate – in the forearm, keeping the bones in alignment until bone healing. Operative stabilization by elastic stable intramedullary nailing is the primarily method of treatment in cases of unstable fractures, in particular, in children between preschool age and adolescence. For older children near to skeletal maturity, a rigid plate and screw fixation will be justified. The most common complication after closed treatment is worsening of the alignment and need for repetitive interventions. elastic stable intramedullary nailing results usually in good outcome, and range of forearm rotation is the main feature determining the clinical result. In this article, we report the current concept of paediatric shaft fractures in the radius and ulna.
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Keywords: children and adolescents; forearm shaft; fracture; radius and ulna; treatment

Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: Department of Paediatric Surgery and Orthopaedics, Oulu University Hospital, Oulu, Finland

Publication date: May 1, 2015

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