Nonunion of a distal femoral epiphyseal fracture-separation

Am J Orthop (Belle Mead NJ). 1996 Nov;25(11):773-7.


Distal femoral physeal fractures account for approximately 1% of all epiphyseal injuries. Complications include growth arrest and leg length discrepancy, malunion and deformity, and stiffness and knee instability. However, nonunion of such a fracture is exceedingly rare and has only been reported in patients with spinal dysraphism. We report a case of distal femoral physeal nonunion in a neurologically intact adolescent athlete. Initially, there was a delay in the diagnosis of this nondisplaced fracture, as the patient had normal roentgenograms. Additional imaging modalities (magnetic resonance imaging, stress radiographs) should be performed if there is a high index of suspicion of physeal injury when roentgenograms are normal.

Publication types

  • Case Reports

MeSH terms

  • Bone Screws
  • Child
  • Diagnostic Errors*
  • Epiphyses, Slipped / diagnostic imaging*
  • Epiphyses, Slipped / etiology
  • Epiphyses, Slipped / surgery
  • Femoral Fractures / diagnostic imaging*
  • Femoral Fractures / etiology
  • Femoral Fractures / surgery
  • Football / injuries*
  • Fractures, Ununited / diagnostic imaging*
  • Fractures, Ununited / etiology
  • Fractures, Ununited / surgery
  • Humans
  • Magnetic Resonance Imaging
  • Male
  • Radiography