Isolated olecranon fractures in children affected by osteogenesis imperfecta type I treated with single screw or tension band wiring system: Outcomes and pitfalls in relation to bone mineral density

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Abstract

The purpose of this study is to compare the results of 2 techniques, tension band wiring (TBW) and fixation with screws, in olecranon fractures in children affected with osteogenesis imperfecta (OI) type I. Between 2010 and 2014, 21 olecranon fractures in 18 children with OI (average age: 12 years old) were treated surgically. Ten patients were treated with the screw fixation and 11 with TBW. A total of 65% of olecranon fractures occurred as a result of a spontaneous avulsion of the olecranon during the contraction of the triceps muscle. The average follow-up was 36 months. Among the children treated with 1 screw, 5 patients needed a surgical revision with TBW due to a mobilization of the screw. In this group, the satisfactory results were 50%. In patients treated with TBW, the satisfactory results were 100% of the cases. The average Z-score, the last one recorded in the patients before the trauma, was −2.53 in patients treated with screw fixation and −2.04 in those treated with TBW. TBW represents the safest surgical treatment for patients suffering from OI type I, as it helps to prevent the rigidity of the elbow through an earlier recovery of the range of motion, and there was no loosening of the implant. In analyzing the average Z-score before any fracture, the fixation with screws has an increased risk of failure in combination with low bone mineral density.

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