What to Learn from this Article?
What to Learn from this Article?
Posterior dislocated humeral fracture can be reduced by schanz screw through deltopectoral approach without increasing risk to remaining blood supply.
Case Report | Volume 7 | Issue 6 | JOCR Nov – Dec 2017 | Page 24-26| Waqar Saadat, Puneet Monga. DOI: 10.13107/jocr.2250-0685.934
Authors: Waqar Saadat , Puneet Monga 
 Department Trauma and Orthopaedic, Furness General Hospital, Barrow-in-Furness. UK.
 Department Trauma and Orthopaedic, Wrigthington, Wigan and Leigh NHS Trust, UK.
Address of Correspondence:
Dr. Waqar Saadat,
Furness General Hospital, Barrow-in-Furness, UK.
Introduction: Posteriorly dislocated humeral head fracture has a great implication, as it is associated with high risk of avascular necrosis, limited access through the deltopectoral approach, and posterior approach to the posteriorly dislocated humeral fracture increases the risk to the remaining blood supply.
Technical Tip: Posteriorly dislocated humeral fracture is approached through deltopectoral approach. Schanz pin is inserted into the humeral head to achieve purchase in the humeral head. Applying laterally directed force the humeral head is disengaged from the lateral margin of glenoid. A rotatory force then repositions the humeral head into a congruous position. Open reduction internal fixation is then carried out in a standard fashion.
Conclusion: Retrieving the humeral head from the posteriorly dislocated position in patients with posterior fracture dislocation of the shoulder can be challenge to a trauma surgeon. With this novel technique, humeral head is reduced through deltopectoral approach without increasing the risk to the remaining blood supply.
Keywords: Posterior shoulder dislocation, avascular necrosis, deltopectoral approach, Schanz screw.
Proximal humeral fractures rank as second most common fractures of the upper extremity accounting for 4–5% of all fractures . About 20% of displaced proximal humeral fractures require surgery . However, functional outcome mainly depends on the age of the patient and less on the deformity [3, 4]. In fractures where adequate reduction and stable fixation cannot be achieved, and the vascularity of the head fragment is impaired or at risk, primary arthroplasty has to consider. Using anterograde, intramedullary nailing for complex fractures has considerable disadvantage of affecting rotator cuff function. For fractures where there is no significant displacement of the tuberosities, intramedullary locking nails are best option to consider in displaced two-part fractures or three- and four-part fractures . Locking plate fixation has proved to be the gold standard, especially when the displacement of the tuberosities is present. Retrieving locked posteriorly dislocated humeral head can be a challenge from an anterior deltopectoral approach . Insertion of rotator cuff, biceps tendon and neighboring neurovascular structures, and extramedullary fixation of proximal humeral fractures mainly has to be approached from lateral aspect [7, 8]. Only way to achieve reduction of the medial fracture zone is through indirect manipulation or across the fracture line . Fluoroscopy is mandatory as direct visual control is not possible . Posteriorly dislocated humeral head fracture and associated comminution has a great implication as it is associated with high risk of avascular necrosis . The standard deltopectoral approach provides limited access to the posterior aspect of the proximal humerus  and posterior approach to the posteriorly dislocated humeral fracture increases the risk to the remaining blood supply. This poses a dilemma for the operating surgeon. We suggest a technical tip to help reduce the humeral head without increasing the risk to the remaining blood supply.
Posteriorly dislocated humeral fracture (Fig. 1 and 2) is approached through deltopectoral approach. Schanz screws are intended for use with external fixator system. With the help of universal drill chuck with a T-handle, Schanz screw is manually screwed into the middle of the fracture surface the posteriorly dislocated humeral head to achieve purchase in the humeral head (Fig. 3). Applying laterally directed force, the humeral head is disengaged from the lateral margin of the glenoid (Fig. 4). A rotatory force then repositions the humeral head into a congruous position. Open reduction internal fixation is then carried out in a standard fashion.
Undisplaced proximal humerus fractures which can be treated and managed non-operatively with favorable outcome, fractures with intra-articular extension and severe comminution require surgical fixation [2, 12]. Fracture reduction is of paramount importance in orthopedic surgery which holds true even for proximal humerus fracture .
During the deltopectoral approach, soft-tissue stripping damage the local blood supply and integrity of deltoid, which may increase the risk of avascular necrosis and delay post-operative functional recovery [14, 15, 16]. Retrieving the humeral head from the posteriorly dislocated position in patients with posterior fracture dislocation of the shoulder can be challenge to a trauma surgeon.
With this novel technique, the humeral head is reduced via deltopectoral approach without increasing the risk to the remaining blood supply.
1. Neer CS II, Rockwood CA. Fractures and dislocations of the shoulder, in Rockwood and Green: Fractures in adults. Philadelphia, PA: Lippincott.1984:675–721.
2. James C W, Sujay K D, Joby J G M, Mohammed W. Proximal Humeral Fractures: A Review of Current Concepts. Open Orthop J. 2013; 7: 361-365.
3. Cheng SL, Mackay MB, Richard RR. Treatment of locked posterior fracture-dislocation of the shoulder by total shoulder arthroplasty. J Shoulder Elbow Surg. 1997 Jan-Feb;6(1):11-7.
4. Nho SJ, Brophy RH, Barker JU, Cornell CN, MacGillivray JD. Management of proximal humerus fracture based on current literature. J Bone Joint Surg Am. 2007;89(3):44–58.
5. Friess DM, Attia A. Locking plate fixation for proximal humerus fractures: a comparison with other fixation techniques. Orthopaedics. 2008;31(12):pii. orthosupersite.
6. Doshi C, Sharma GM, Naik LG, Qureshi F. Treatment of Proximal Humerus Fracture using PHILOS Plate. J Clin Diagn Rese. 2017;11(1):10-13.
7. Robinson CM, Murray IR. The extended deltoid-splitting approach to the proximal humerus: variations and extensions. J Bone J Surg Br. 2011;93:387–92.
8. Brunner F, Sommer C, Bahrs C, et al. Open reduction and internal fixation of proximal humerus fractures using a proximal humeral locked plate: a prospective multicenter analysis. J Orthop Trauma. 2009;23:163–72
9. Gallo RA, Zeiders GJ, Altman GT. Two-incision technique for treatment of complex proximal humerus fractures. J Orthop Trauma. 2005;19:734–40.
10. Zlotolow DA, Catalano LW, III, Barron OA, et al. Surgical exposures of the humerus. J Am Acad Orthop Surg. 2006;14:754–65.
11. Fjalestad T, Hole MØ. Displaced proximal humeral fractures: operative versus non-operative treatment—a 2-year extension of a randomized controlled trial. Eur J Orthop Surg Traumatol. 2014;24:1067–73
12. Ring D. Current concepts in plate and screw fixation of osteoporotic proximal humerus fractures. Injury. 2007;38(SUPPL. 3):59–68.
13. Maier D, Jäger M, Strohm PC, Südkamp NP. Treatment of proximal humeral fractures—a review of current concepts enlightened by basic principles. Acta Chir Orthop Traumatol Cechoslov. 2012;79:307–316.
14. Gerber C, Schneeberger AG, Vinh TS. The arterial vascularization of the humeral head. An anatomical study. J Bone Joint Surg Am. 1990;72:1486–1494.
15. Meyer C, Alt V, Hassanin H, Heiss C, Stahl JP, Giebel G, Koebke J, Schnettler R. The arteries of the humeral head and their relevance in fracture treatment. Surg Radiol Anat. 2005;27:232–237.
16. Laux CJ, Grubhofer F, Werner CML, Simmen HP, Osterhoff G. Current concepts in locking plate fixation of proximal humerus fractures. JOrthop Surg Res. 2017 Sep 25;12(1):137.
|Dr. Waqar Saadat||Dr. Puneet Monga|
|How to Cite This Article: Saadat W, Monga P. Open Reduction and Internal Fixation of Posterior Fracture Dislocation of the Shoulder Made Easy. Journal of Orthopaedic Case Reports 2017 Nov-Dec; 7(6): 24-26|
[Full Text HTML] [Full Text PDF] [XML]
Dear Reader, We are very excited about New Features in JOCR. Please do let us know what you think by Clicking on the Sliding “Feedback Form” button on the <<< left of the page or sending a mail to us at email@example.com