A prospective plan to minimise median nerve related complications associated with operatively treated distal radius fractures.

Mark Henry, Christopher Stutz

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Abstract

Loss of median nerve function or a neuropathic pain syndrome may occur in around 20% of distal radius fractures if post-traumatic oedema in the carpal canal generates excessive pressure on the median nerve. No method currently exists to reliably distinguish which patients may benefit from a concomitant carpal tunnel release. This case series details the results of following a prospective plan designed to minimise median nerve related complications associated with distal radius fractures by measuring Semmes-Weinstein monofilament scores in 374 radius fracture patients who underwent surgical stabilisation. One hundred and sixty-nine patients with the clinical symptoms of median nerve compression, a decrement in monofilament score of grade 1 (out of 5) compared to the contralateral side or at least 4.31 g underwent concomitant carpal tunnel release. The remaining 205 patients did not have carpal tunnel release. There were no cases of neuropathic pain or loss of median nerve function.

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ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine(all)

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