Treatment of Supracondylar Fractures of the Humerus in Children by Skeletal Traction
Muhittin SENER, Hafiz AYDIN, Osman AYNACI, Reza SAHAM, Cetin ONDER
Keywords: Supracondylar Fractures, Humerus, Children, Treatment by Traction.
Purpose: To evaluate the results of supracondylar fractures of the humerus which were treated by traction in children. Material: 41 patients were included in this study (17 right and 24 left extremities) with at least six months of follow-up. Only Gartland type 2 and type 3 cases were included.
Methods: Patients were evaluated both clinically and radiologically according to the Dodge criterias. Carrying angle was measured as described by Smith. Hospitalization period and the number of the roentgenograms taken per week were determined.
Results: Results were excellent in 70.73 percent, good in 17.07 percent and poor in 12.19 percent. Pin tract infection was noted in 5 cases. Four nerve injuries noted before the treatment, were resolved spontaneously. In four of five patients who have poor results, cubitus varus deformity were noted and in the other case, elbow motions were restricted more than 20 degrees.
Discussion: Recently, open reduction and internal fixation or closed reduction and percutaneous pinning in the treatment of supracondylar fractures of humerus in children have been performed widely. But ulnar nerve is at the risk in the open techniques. Successfull results have been reported with these technique both clinically and radiologically. However, same results can be achieved with conservative treatment by traction. In conservative method, long hospitalization time is the only most important disadvantage.
Conclusion: Treatment of supracondylar fractures of humerus in children by skeletal traction from olecranon is a safe, reliable and successful method.