Distal Femur Extraarticular fracture, simple

Provisional treatment; temporary long leg splint

Temporary long leg splint

Indication summary: Displaced fracture, medically unfit patient

Skill: Basic surgical experience, no specialized skills
Equipment: Basic equipment only

In occasional cases, a period of nonoperative treatment may be necessary before the patient’s general condition, or the local status of the soft-tissues, will permit safe surgery. In these circumstances, a period of temporary splintage can be used.

Splints are used on a temporary basis before definitive fixation is performed. Shortening and/or significant angulation are risks with splints.

Indications

  • Patient in extremis
  • Significant shortening, or angulation, before delayed operative management

Contraindications

  • Safe definitive fixation possible
  • Local soft-tissue compromise

Advantages

  • Easy to apply
  • Quick and safe procedure

Disadvantages

  • Pressure sores
  • Potential knee stiffness
  • Risk of increased deformity

Legend

*Skill
Basic surgical experience, no specialized skills Basic surgical experience, no specialized skills
Some specialized surgical experience Some specialized surgical experience
Highly experienced and skilled surgeon Highly experienced and skilled surgeon
*Equipment
Basic equipment only Basic equipment only
Simple surgical and imaging resources Simple surgical and imaging resources
Full specialized surgical and imaging resources Full specialized surgical and imaging resources

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v1.0 2008-12-03