Study finds, Immediate Weight Bearing of Plated Both-Bone Fo
Surgical stabilization allows for weight bearing (WB) of the fractured extremity, making rehabilitation easier for trauma patients. Plate osteosynthesis for both-bone forearm fractures (BBFx) is a well-accepted procedure with a high incidence of union and few complications. The researchers hypothesized that immediate WB of surgically treated BBFxs leads to acceptable complication rates.

Patients presenting to a Level-1 trauma center with a BBFx were identified retrospectively. Patients were skeletally mature, surgically treated with prescribed immediate WB protocol, and followed for 6 months or to fracture union.

Complications recorded included nonunion, hardware failure, and infection. Standard statistical comparisons were used to evaluate the risk of complication in polytrauma patients with modified lower extremity WB protocols (polytrauma group) and patients with no lower extremity WB restrictions (isolated group).

--213 patients were included with 75 females and 138 males. Mean age was 40 years and mean follow-up was 46 weeks.

--There were 142 patients in the poly-trauma and 71 patients in the isolated groups.

--In the poly-trauma group 21 patients had bilateral lower extremity WB restrictions. There were 11 complications noted: 2 non-unions, 4 hardware failures, and 5 infections.

--Demographics did not vary between the two groups. There was no difference in complications in the isolated versus poly-trauma groups.

Finally, immediate WB rehabilitation following BBFx plate osteosynthesis appears to be safe, with low nonunion and complication rates. In comparison to isolated BBFx patients, polytrauma patients employing mobility assistance for lower extremity injuries can immediately WB without additional risk.