Anterior Approach Versus Posterior Approach to Surgical Treatment of Children's Supracondylar Fractures: Comparative Study of Thirty Cases in Each Series

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Abstract

Summary

The purpose of this study was to consider the surgical treatment of severe supracondylar fractures of the elbow in children, and to compare the anterior approach with the posterior approach used in two homogeneous groups of 30 cases each by two experienced surgeons. Control procedures were maintained with the children of both groups when the plaster was removed, during the fourth month after surgery, and throughout the follow-up that continued for more than 1 year. A posterior approach to surgery is simpler than an anterior approach, but it creates supplementary anatomic damage that can cause circulatory disorders in the external condyle and a higher percentage of limitation in articulation mobility. Thus, although the anterior approach is more technically demanding, it gives better functional results. Because this approach concerns a zone already damaged by the trauma, it eliminates hematoma in the anterior brachial muscle and again places the fragments in the untouched shell of the periosteum.

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