How do Plates and Screws Fail in the Repair of Femur Fractures?

How do Plates and Screws Fail in the Repair of Femur Fractures?

How do Plates and Screws Fail in the Repair of Femur Fractures?

I’m Ed Smith, a Sacramento Personal Injury Lawyer. One of the most common ways that femur fractures are repaired after traumatic injuries in an auto accident is to use plates and screws to hold the bones together. Unfortunately, these plates and screws can suffer mechanical failure after being used for femur fractures and humerus shaft fractures.

A Retrospective Study was Conducted

A study was published in the Journal of Orthopedic Trauma that discussed a retrospective study at a Level 1 Academic Trauma Center of 29 patients with an age range of 21 to 92 years.  The research looked at the possible reasons for mechanical failure following treatment of femur fractures. For those unaware of possible definitions of mechanical treatment failure following a bone fracture, the study defined this as a loss of alignment at the fracture site following locked plate and screw fixation. This means that if the angle of alignment between the bone fragments changed by greater than 10 percent or if the leg was shortened by over 2 cm due to overlap of fracture fragments, the patient was labeled to have mechanical failure following treatment, placing them at risk for a number of comorbidities and complications.

How did Failure Occur?

When looking at the results of the repairs of the femur fractures in the study, they realized that the most common reason for mechanical failure was due to varus collapse with screw cut out. This means that the fracture “buckled” at a certain angle, leading to a collapse of the plate and damage to the screw. The leg collapses at a varus angle and the screws must be removed and replaced. The study described that the screw looked like a “kickstand,” as opposed to remaining straight. From this mechanism of failure, the surgeons were able to draw conclusions regarding the specific risk factors for failure of mechanical repair.

Who is At Risk?

While other studies have looked at patient-specific risk factors for failure of repair, this paper highlighted a trend in the types of fractures most prone to failure. With regards to proximal femur fractures, these are the fractures most at risk for failing repair. Because of the location within the femur and the angle at which the plates and screws have to be placed, these fractures are at risk for failing, particularly with open fractures. When screws and plates fail, there could also be product liability issues to address. It is important for patients to know what type of femur fracture they have so that they can be prepared for any possible treatment failures.

Sacramento Injury Attorneys

I’m Ed Smith, a Sacramento Personal Injury Lawyer. Any patient who requires screws or plates to repair their fracture should reach out to my office at (916) 921-6400 for friendly, free advice. My practice has a toll-free line available at (800) 404-5400.

I am a member Million Dollar Advocates Forum in the state of California. This esteemed group of lawyers includes some of the top-rated trial attorneys in the country. Everyone in this group has obtained verdicts or settlements worth over $1 Million.

Please feel free to view my prior verdicts and settlements here.

My past customers have written informative reviews on Avvo, Yelp, and Google.

Image Attribution: Sacramento Injury Attorney, Edward A Smith

:dr bw/cv

Client Reviews

  • Me and my wife; had a car accident. We were amazed how easy, professional, friendly attorney Ed Smith is along with his staff. Everybody is amazing. Thank you so much, we are very impressed!
  • Ed Smith and his office team took on a difficult personal injury case on my behalf and for the passenger in my car. Ed is a top- notch attorney. His staff couldn't have been more helpful and kind. No need to look elsewhere. I give Ed Smith my highest recommendation.
  • Ed and Robert have been taking great care of my husband and I for the past 5+ years. They are always there when you have a problem and a quick resolution! Even when the issues have nothing to do with them. They are willing to help ease the pain off your shoulders. They are as good as it gets! Thank you again for everything.
  • Very professional. Great team, staff and service all around. Mr Smith was very honest, straight forward with his advice. He gives the word "attorney" an honest reputation. I will seek his council anytime, and would recommend him at the drop of a dime.
  • I would highly recommend Ed Smith to any friends or family in need of a personal injury attorney. Ed, and his staff, are very caring on top of being very experienced in this field. The staff always keeps you informed of the status of your case and they are always easy to reach by phone.
  • Edward Smith law offices provide competent, thorough, and personable help for victims of personal injury. When you first meet the staff you know you contacted the right office. This law office treats clients like people. I recommend this office to anyone seeking representation regarding personal injury.