Arch Hand Microsurg.  2017 Dec;22(4):240-246. 10.12790/ahm.2017.22.4.240.

Systemic Risk Factors of Extensor Pollicis Longus Tendon Rupture after Distal Radius Fracture

  • 1Department of Orthopaedic Surgery, The Catholic University of Korea, Bucheon St. Mary's Hospital, Bucheon, Korea.
  • 2Department of Orthopaedic Surgery, Dongshin General Hospital, Seoul, Korea.


A rupture of extensor pollicis longus tendon is a common complication that may occur after distal radius fracture but risk factors are still elusive. Systemic risk factors of extensor pollicis longus tendon rupture in distal radius fracture were investigated.
We retrospectively reviewed 30 patients of extensor pollicis longus tendon rupture after distal radius fracture from February 2010 to March 2016. Three times more patients for the control group with matched sex, age and type of fracture without extensor pollicis longus tendon rupture were chosen during the same period. We statistically analyzed systemic risk factors of spontaneous tendon rupture, such as low bodyweight, diabetes mellitus, rheumatoid arthritis, thyroid disease, systemic steroid use, local steroid injection around wrist, quinolone, and statins.
The incidence of extensor pollicis longus tendon rupture was significantly higher in the group of steroid use than in the control group.
The use of steroid in patient with distal radius fracture may be a potential risk factor for extensor pollicis longus tendon rupture. Local steroid injection is not statistically related to extensor pollicis tendon rupture. Patients of distal radius fracture with steroid use need precaution if they have symptoms of extensor pollicis longus tendon rupture.


Colles' fracture; Extensor pollicis longus tendon rupture; Risk factors

MeSH Terms

Arthritis, Rheumatoid
Colles' Fracture
Diabetes Mellitus
Hydroxymethylglutaryl-CoA Reductase Inhibitors
Radius Fractures*
Retrospective Studies
Risk Factors*
Thyroid Diseases


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