Open Orthopaedics Journal
Supracondylar humerus fractures are common pediatric injuries. Little is known about the risk factors for repeat operative procedures. A retrospective chart review of 709 patients treated for a displaced supracondylar humerus fracture was performed to identify risk factors for return to the operating room during the initial post-operative period. Deviations of routine fracture care were recorded and complication rates were compared between Gartland type 2 and 3 fractures using logistic regression. Type 3 fractures were found to have a higher complication rate, and, specifically, more peri-operative nerve palsies, more likely to need to return to the operating room for hardware removal, to lose fracture reduction, and require a return to the operating room for any reason. Five risk factors which may require returning to the operating room were identified: younger patient age, left sided fractures, type 3 fractures, peri-operative nerve palsy, and post-operative infection. In conclusion, Gartland type 3 supracondylar humerus fractures are associated with more complications then type 2 fractures. Risk factors for the need to return to the operating room in the post-operative period include: younger patient age, left sided fractures, type 3 fractures, peri-operative nerve palsy, and post-operative infection. Patients with these risk factors should be considered at risk for return to the OR and fracture fixation and follow up protocols should be adjusted for this risk.
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Oetgen, M.E., Mirick, G.E., Atwater, L., Lovejoy, J.F. (2015). Complications and Predictors of Need for Return to the Operating Room in the Treatment of Supracondylar Humerus Fractures in Children. Open Orthopaedics Journal, 9, 139-142.