Executive Editor: Peter Trafton, Michael Baumgaertner

Authors: Peter Kloen, David Ring

Proximal forearm Radius, extraarticular, simple

back to skeleton

Glossary

Radial neck fractures are very common, usually minimally displaced, and stiffness is the major risk.

Nonoperative
Indication summary Skill Equipment
Non- or minimally displaced stable fracture Basic surgical experience, no specialized skills Basic equipment only

Note: Nonoperative treatment is generally only indicated if functional forearm rotation can be demonstrated with or without anesthetic injection.

Contraindications

  • Part of a more complex injury with elbow or forearm instability
  • Infirm or dependent person
  • Polytrauma

Advantages

  • Avoid operative risks

Disadvantages

  • Very slight chance of symptomatic radial neck nonunion
Compression with T-plate and screws
Indication summary Skill Equipment
Displaced transverse fracture Highly experienced and skilled surgeon Simple surgical and imaging resources

Further indications

  • Displaced fracture that is either part of a complex injury with elbow or forearm instability, or with restriction of forearm rotation

Contraindications

  • Elbow and forearm stable and mobile

Advantages

  • Healing of native radial head in more anatomical position

Disadvantages

  • Risk of prominent or errant implants
  • Risk of nonunion
  • Risk of radial nerve injury
*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

v2.0 2018-04-30