Medial epicondyle fracture comprises a considerable proportion of pediatric elbow injury. The fracture fragment is typically pulled distally by the muscle and the ligament. This study aims to suggest proper recognition of a subset of the fracture that differs from its usual presentation.
A retrospective case study was conducted during 2011–2016. Of those cases, a subset was identified as proximally displaced (atypical) ones. Distinctive radiologic images, as well as the injury causes, demographic data, clinical signs, treatment ways, and final follow-ups regarding these atypical ones, were presented and discussed. The fracture mechanism was carefully inferred from former theories and the operative findings, and a tentative management strategy was suggested.
Seven out of 112 cases were distinguished as the atypical, which represents 6.25% of the whole sample. Injury causes were all direct or combined direct/indirect force injuries instead of indirect force mostly seen in the typical. Five were operated while two nonoperatively treated. Operated cases revealed stripping of medial epicondyle from its surrounding periosteum/muscle origin or even cartilage. The fracture fragment was either pulled by proximal periosteum or even proximally dissociated. The outcomes of those atypical were mostly acceptable despite some minor defects.
The proximally displaced cases do constitute a portion of medial humeral epicondyle fracture in children. As well as its skeletal manifestation, awareness of its injury mechanism and soft tissue damage is required. Precise restoration of its anatomical structure might be vital for its treatment. Further scientific work is needed regarding its mechanism and management.
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