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VOLUME 12 , ISSUE 1 ( April, 2017 ) > List of Articles

Original Article

Subjective ulnar nerve dysfunction commonly following open reduction, internal fixation (ORIF) of distal humeral fractures and in situ decompression of the ulnar nerve

Birgitta Svernlöv, Jens Nestorson, Lars Adolfsson

Keywords : Fracture, ORIF, Transposition, Humeral, Dellon, McGowan

Citation Information : Svernlöv B, Nestorson J, Adolfsson L. Subjective ulnar nerve dysfunction commonly following open reduction, internal fixation (ORIF) of distal humeral fractures and in situ decompression of the ulnar nerve. 2017; 12 (1):19-25.

DOI: 10.1007/s11751-016-0271-5

License: CC BY-NC-SA 4.0

Published Online: 30-04-2017

Copyright Statement:  Copyright © 2017; Jaypee Brothers Medical Publishers (P) Ltd.


Abstract

The aim of this retrospective study was to investigate the frequency of persistent ulnar affection in patients who underwent open reduction and internal fixation (ORIF) of distal humeral fractures without ulnar nerve transposition or mobilisation. Eighty-two patients (53 women), mean age 62 years, were, at a mean of 48 months, reviewed through medical records and a subjective evaluation form concerning ulnar nerve problems. Ulnar nerve affliction, in most cases regarded as mild, was experienced by 22 patients (27%; 14 women) and significantly associated with multiple surgeries. Three patients had been operated with late neurolysis and one with transposition without reported improvement. The proportion of ulnar nerve dysfunction was equally common regardless of medial or lateral plating. ORIF with plate fixation and without ulnar nerve transposition seems to be an acceptable option for patients with distal humeral fractures. The frequency of ulnar nerve affection in our series does not appear higher than previously reported. Subjective ulnar nerve symptoms were, however, relatively common and appear related to the trauma itself, the surgery, or the post-operative management which highlights the need for further analysis of these factors.


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