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The Capital Region of Denmark - a part of Copenhagen University Hospital
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Fibular nailing for bi-malleolar and tri-malleolar ankle fractures yields good functional outcomes - a retrospective single-centre study

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INTRODUCTION: The surgical treatment of elderly patients with unstable ankle fractures is challenging. Open reduction and internal fixation with conventional plating technique often yields a poor outcome. However, fracture management with isolated fibular nailing represents an alternative method.

METHODS: We performed a retrospective study of patients treated with isolated fibular nailing at the North Zealand Hospital, Denmark, between 1 January 2012 and 31 December 2016. A total of 58 patients were included. The primary outcome was post-operative function (dependency of a walking aid). Secondary outcomes were pain, radiographic union and complications (infection, fracture displacement and screw migration).

RESULTS: At the last follow-up (mean follow-up of 10.3 months), 84.2% of the patients had returned to their baseline level of function. 18% had persistent pain. The last post-operative radiographic follow-up showed union in 93.7% of fractures of the lateral malleolus and 50% of the medial malleolus. The complication rate was 13.7%.

CONCLUSIONS: Isolated fibular nailing with immediate full weight bearing in plaster yields an acceptable functional outcome in elderly patients with unstable fractures of the malleoli.

FUNDING: none.

TRIAL REGISTRATION: not relevant.

Original languageEnglish
Article numberA07200539
JournalDanish Medical Journal
Volume68
Issue number5
ISSN1603-9629
Publication statusPublished - 20 Apr 2021

    Research areas

  • Aged, Ankle Fractures/diagnostic imaging, Ankle Joint, Fracture Fixation, Internal, Fracture Fixation, Intramedullary, Humans, Retrospective Studies, Treatment Outcome

ID: 66405542