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VOLUME 17 , ISSUE 2 ( May-August, 2022 ) > List of Articles


A Meta-analysis Comparing External Fixation against Open Reduction and Internal Fixation for the Management of Tibial Plateau Fractures

Ahmad S Naja, Nour Bouji, Mohamad Nasser Eddine, Humaid Alfarii, Rudolf Reindl, Yehia Tfayli, Mohamad Issa, Said Saghieh

Keywords : External fixator, Fracture, Internal fracture fixation, Tibia

Citation Information : Naja AS, Bouji N, Eddine MN, Alfarii H, Reindl R, Tfayli Y, Issa M, Saghieh S. A Meta-analysis Comparing External Fixation against Open Reduction and Internal Fixation for the Management of Tibial Plateau Fractures. 2022; 17 (2):105-116.

DOI: 10.5005/jp-journals-10080-1557

License: CC BY-NC-SA 4.0

Published Online: 28-07-2022

Copyright Statement:  Copyright © 2022; The Author(s).


Aim: This article aims to compare the outcomes between open reduction and internal fixation (ORIF) and external fixation (ExFix) in tibial plateau fractures. Background: Open reduction and internal fixation and external fixation are common methods for managing tibial plateau fractures without a consensus of choice. Materials and methods: PubMed, Cochrane Library, Ovid, CINAHL®, Scopus, and Embase were searched. Clinical studies in humans comparing ExFix and ORIF for tibial plateau fractures were included. Case reports, pathological, and biomechanical studies were excluded. Two investigators reviewed the studies independently, and any discrepancies were resolved. The quality and heterogeneity of each study were assessed in addition to calculating the odds ratio (OR) of the surgical outcomes and complications at a 95% confidence interval, with p <0.05 as statistical significance. Results: Of the 14 included studies, one was a randomised trial, one was a prospective study, and 12 were retrospective studies. The 865 fractures identified across the studies constituted 458 (52.9%) in the ExFix group and 407 (47.1%) in the ORIF group. Most studies indicated a better outcome for ORIF as compared to ExFix. Open reduction and internal fixation had a lower incidence of superficial infection and postoperative osteoarthritis, while ExFix revealed a lower proportion with heterotopic ossification (HTO). Conclusion: ExFix has a higher rate of superficial infections and osteoarthritis, whereas ORIF has a higher incidence of HTO. Larger studies are needed to compare outcomes and investigate the findings of this study further. Clinical significance: This up-to-date meta-analysis on tibial plateau management will help surgeons make evidence-based decisions regarding the use of ORIF versus ExFix.

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