Intra-articular impaction fractures of the phalanges

J Hand Surg Am. 1995 Mar;20(2):327-33. doi: 10.1016/S0363-5023(05)80035-8.


Six patients with acute impacted fractures of the base of the proximal or middle phalanges were treated with open reduction and internal fixation. Two of three patients who presented with chronic injuries also underwent surgical reconstruction. Contiguous 1.5-mm sagittal computed tomographic imaging was performed on each proximal interphalangeal joint fracture; the imaging documented an average impaction of 30% of the articular surface area. Metaphyseal bone grafting was necessary to support the articular surface in three acute and both late patients. Rigid internal fixation, most frequently employing a composite wire tension band technique, allowed immediate postoperative range of motion exercises. At an average follow-up period of 21 months, all six acute patients had restoration of an excellent painless range of motion. There was no loss of articular congruency on final x-ray films. Late or conservative treatment of these injuries was uniformly less successful.

MeSH terms

  • Accidental Falls
  • Accidents, Traffic
  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Athletic Injuries / diagnostic imaging
  • Athletic Injuries / surgery
  • Female
  • Finger Injuries / diagnostic imaging
  • Finger Injuries / surgery*
  • Finger Joint / diagnostic imaging
  • Finger Joint / surgery
  • Follow-Up Studies
  • Fracture Fixation, Internal / methods
  • Fractures, Closed / diagnostic imaging
  • Fractures, Closed / surgery*
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Tomography, X-Ray Computed
  • Treatment Outcome