The Effect of Fracture Patterns, Pinning Configuration, Surgeon Experience and Subspecialty on Short-Term Radiological Outcomes of Pediatric Supracondylar Humeral Fractures Treated in the Prone Position: A Case-Series

Healthcare (Basel). 2023 Sep 28;11(19):2648. doi: 10.3390/healthcare11192648.


Background: The most common treatment modality for supracondylar humerus fractures (SCHFs) in children is closed reduction and percutaneous pinning (CRPP). Nonetheless, debate persists regarding the optimal technique used. Therefore, the purpose of our study was to investigate the impact of surgeon experience, surgeon subspecialty and pin configuration on short-term radiological outcomes following CRPP of displaced SCHFs.

Methods: Patients less than 14 years of age who underwent CRPP for displaced SCHFs in the prone position between January 2018 and December 2022 were analyzed. Patients were separated into subgroups based on fracture type (low vs. high sagittal), pin configuration (lateral, cross, other), number and configuration of K-wires and first operator surgical experience. The following outcome measurements were collected: postoperative Baumann angle (BA), Shaft-Condylar angle (SCA), surgical duration (SD), duration of radiation exposure (DRE) and number of clinical and radiological follow-ups (FU).

Results: A total of 44 patients with a mean age of 6 ± 2.5 years were included in the final analysis. The mean post-operative BA and SCA were 74.8° ± 4.9° and 37.7° ± 10.2°, respectively. No significant differences were found in the post-operative Baumann's angle or SCA among the subgroups. Regarding secondary outcomes, no differences were found among each subgroup regarding SD, DRE and FUs.

Conclusion: Short-term radiological outcomes following the treatment of SCHFs treated in the prone position are not affected by fracture patterns and pinning configuration, regardless of the surgeon's years of experience or subspecialty.

Keywords: CRPP; children; elbow; general orthopedic; pediatric orthopedic; pinning; prone position; radiological exposure; radiological outcome; subspecialty; supine position.

Grants and funding

This research received no external funding.