Clinical and epidemiological assessment of supracondylar humeral fractures in children in Alhusain teaching hospital

  • Wahby Ghalib Shaty Lecturer, Department of Surgery, College of Medicine, Thiqar University


Supracondylar humeral fracture represents the commonest pediatric elbow fracture. It mostly occurs below the age of 10 years after simple fall on outstretched hand or on the elbow. The factors that contribute to its high frequency include weakness of the supracondylar area and the relative ligamentous laxity in children as well as the more liability to fall in this age group. It is a source of relatively high morbidity rate. Possible complications include neurovascular injury, compartment syndrome, joint stiffness and deformity. In this study we  to assessed multiple epidemiologic factors including the crude number of cases over the period of time of the study, the fracture type according to displacement and rate of each possible complication. We also followed cases prospectively documenting the modality of treatment offered, the healing time, the way of dealing with complications and their prognosis. The output results of the study help in standardizing the orthopaedic handling of this fracture in our locality. This includes the proper assessment of the size of the problem and its complications and the best way of dealing with it.


-Lins RE, Simovitch RW, Waters PM. Pediatric elbow trauma. Orthop Clin North Am 1999; 30:119.

Kasser JR, Beaty JH. Supracondylar fractures of the distal humerus. In: Rockwood and Wilkins' Fractures in Children, 5th, Beaty JH, Kasser JR. (Eds), Lippincott Williams & Wilkins, Philadelphia 2001. p.577.

Cheng JC, Lam TP, Maffulli N. Epidemiological features of supracondylar fractures of the humerus in Chinese children. J Pediatr Orthop B 2001 10(1):63-67.

Farnsworth CL, Silva PD, Mubarak SJ. Etiology of supracondylar humerus fractures. J Pediatr Orthop 1998 18(1):38-42.

Houshian S, Mehdi B, Larsen MS. The epidemiology of elbow fracture in children: analysis of 355 fractures, with special reference to supracondylar humerus fractures. J Orthop Sci 2001 6(4):312-315.

-Hart, Grottkau, Rebello, Albright. Broken bones : common pediatric upper extremity fractures – part II. Orthopaedic nursing. 2006; 25 : 311.

Lord B, Sarraf KM. Paediatric supracondylar fractures of the humerus: acute assessment and management. British Journal of Hospital Medicine. 2011;72(1):M8

Wilkins KE, Beaty J. Fractures in Children. Philadelphia: Lippincott-Raven, 1996.

Bristow WR. Myositis ossificans and Volkmann's paralysis: notes on two cases, illustrating the rarer complications of supracondylar fracture of the humerus. Br J Surg 1923 10:475-481.

Campbell CC, Waters PM, Emans JB, et al. Neurovascular injury and displacement in type III supracondylar humerus fractures. J Pediatr Orthop 1995 15(1):47-52.

Copley LA, Dormans JP, Davidson RS. Vascular injuries and their sequelae in pediatric supracondylar humeral fractures: toward a goal of prevention. J Pediatr Orthop 1996 16(1):99-103.

Schoenecker PL, Delgado E, Rotman M, et al. Pulseless arm in association with totally displaced supracondylar fracture. J Orthop Trauma 1996 10(6):410-415.

Sairyo K, Henmi T, Kanematsu Y, et al. Radial nerve palsy associated with slightly angulated pediatric supracondylar humerus fracture. J Orthop Trauma 1997 11(3):227-229.

Mehlman CT, Crawford AH, McMillion TL, et al. Operative treatment of supracondylar fractures of the humerus in children: the Cincinnati experience. Acta Orthop Belg 1996 62(Suppl 1):41-50.

. Gennari JM, Merrot T, Piclet B, Bergoin M.Anterior approach versus posterior approach to surgical treatment of children's supracondylar fractures: comparative study of thirty cases in each series. J Pediatr Orthop B. 1998 Oct;7(4):307-13

Zionts LE, McKellop HA, Hathaway R. Torsional strength of pin configurations used to fix supracondylar fractures of the humerus in children. J Bone Joint Surg (Am) 1994; 76(2):253-256.

Lee SS, Mahar AT, Miesen D, et al. Displaced pediatric supracondylar humerus fractures: biomechanical analysis of percutaneous pinning techniques. J Pediatr Orthop 2002 22(4):440-443.

Onwuanyi ON, Nwobi DG. Evaluation of the stability of pin configuration in K-wire fixation of displaced supracondylar fractures in children. Int Surg 1998 83(3):271-274.

Skaggs DL, Hale JM, Bassett J, et al. Operative treatment of supracondylar fractures of the humerus in children. The consequences of pin placement. J Bone Joint Surg (Am) 2001 83A(5):735-740.

Wilkins KE, Beaty J. Fractures in Children. Philadelphia: Lippincott-Raven, 1996.

Edman P, Loehr G. Supracondylar fractures of the humerus treated with olecranon traction. Acta Chir Scand 1963 126:505-516.

Fowles JV, Kassab MT. Displaced supracondylar fractures of the elbow in children. A report on the fixation of extension and flexion fractures by two lateral percutaneous pins. J Bone Joint Surg (Br) 1974 56B(3):490-500.

Hoyer A. Treatment of supracondylar fracture of the humerus by skeletal traction in an abduction splint. J Bone Joint Surg (Am) 1952 24-A-3:623-637.