Management of compound fractures of shaft femur: a study of 55 cases

Gaurav Singla, Amita Aggarwal, Ravinder Singh


Background: Compound femoral shaft fractures are a major cause of morbidity and mortality. Conservative treatment necessitates a long stay in hospital for traction and subsequent immobilization and chances of wound infection are much higher. The objective of this study was to find out the outcome of treatment of open femoral shaft fractures by various modalities like interlocked nailing, plating and external fixation.

Methods: Fifty five patients with open femoral shaft fractures were treated under spinal or general anaesthesia. These fractures were in proximal one third (n=3), middle third (n=29), distal third (n=21). Fifty patients underwent surgery within 5 days of injury. Patients were followed for a minimum of 12 Months.

Results: Patients achieved union in an average time of 20 weeks (range 17 to 24 weeks). Full weight bearing was started in a mean time of 16 weeks. Mean duration of hospital stay was 20 days. Complications were occurred in ten patients (4 non-unions and 3 patients with deep infection and 3 patients developed chronic osteomyelitis).

Conclusions: The results were excellent in 31, good in 13, fair in 3 and poor in 7 patients while one patient lost follow up as he was from far off place. We concluded that open femoral shaft fracture can be well managed by surgical intervention.


Compound femoral shaft fractures, Interlocked nailing, Plating, External fixator

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