Distal radius fractures—regional variation in treatment regimens

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Abstract

Objectives After recent technical innovations of fracture surgery implants, treatment traditions are changing for distal radius fractures, the most common orthopaedic injury. The aim of this study was to determine if the choice of surgical method for treatment of distal radius fractures differ between healthcare regions in Sweden. Method The study was based on all (n = 22 378) adult patients who were registered with a surgical procedure due to a distal radius fracture during 2010–2013 in Sweden. Consecutive data was collected from the Swedish National Patient Registry. Results The proportions of use of surgical method varied among the 21 healthcare regions between 41% and 95% for internal fixation, between 2.3% and 44% for percutaneous fixation and between 0.6% and 19% for external fixation. Differences between regions were statistically significant in all but 6 comparisons when controlled for age and gender. Incidence rates of surgical treatment of a distal radius fracture varied between 4.2 and 9.2/10 000 person-years. Conclusion We conclude that there is a large variation in operative management of distal radius fractures between Swedish healthcare regions.

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Saving, J., Ponzer, S., Enocson, A., & Navarro, C. M. (2018). Distal radius fractures—regional variation in treatment regimens. PLoS ONE, 13(11). https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0207702

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