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J Korean Soc Fract. 1989 Jun;2(1):60-70. Korean. Original Article.
Kim SS , Shim DM , Lee MJ , Shim YS .
Department of Orthopedic Surgery, Won-Kwang University Hospital, I-Ri, Korea.

The fracture of the tibia shaft is difficult to treat because of high tendency of open fracture and complications such as osteomyelitis, soft tissue defect, delayed union and non-union. To evaluate that external fixation alone can be a final solution on treatment of the tibial fractures of the change of treament mode after external fixation, We studied 50 cases of fractures of the tibia shaft which were treated with external fixation between January 198 4 and June 1988. The results were as follows. 1. Among causes of injury, the traffic accidents were the most common. 2. Among the type of fractures, comminuted fractures were 26 cases(41%) and open fractures 47 cases(92%). By classification of Gustilo and Anderson most cases were open type III(60%). 3. The 4 cases(8%) were treated with external fixation alone and the time to union ave-raged 5.2 months. 4. For the 15 cases(30%), external fixators were removed, then applied cast and the time to union averaged 5.3 months. The 12 cases(24%) were treated with bone grafting and cast after removal of external fixator and the time to union averaged 6.8 months. 5. Among the secondary additional operatioin required after external fixation, bone operations were 34 cases, soft tissue operations 13 cases and comosite operations 3 cases. The bone 5 cases(39%) out of 13 cases of soft tissue operation. 6. The duration of external fixation was 22 days to 248 days, mean 101.6 days. 7. A retrospective evaluation of 50 cases treated external fixation revealed that external fixation was simple, safe and dffective method in the initial stage of fracture treatment but could not be a final Solution.

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