Wrist fracture

A 65-year-old male was a restrained driver of an automobile struck by another vehicle in a head-on collision while on vacation overseas. He sustained a left-sided wrist fracture and was taken to a local hospital for initial care.

Radiographs revealed a displaced distal radius fracture with articular involvement. Spanning external fixation was placed at the outside hospital for initial management. He was referred to us for definitive management of his wrist fracture.

Open reduction and internal fixation was performed with placement of a locking plate dorsally.

He returned for regular follow-up and radiographs at 6 months illustrate a healed distal radius fracture in anatomic alignment with maintenance of hardware and he reports resolution of pain and a return to pre-injury activities.

  • Figure A, B

    Figure A, B

    (A) Anteroposterior (AP) and lateral radiographs illustrating a left-sided displaced distal radius fracture with articular involvement.

    (B) CT scan images further delineate the fracture pattern and articular involvement.


  • Figure C, D

    Figure C, D

    (C) Preoperative plan for open reduction and internal fixation with a dorsal locking plate and screws.

    (D) Radiographs at 6 months reveal a healed distal radius fracture.



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David L. Helfet, MD 

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