Proximal tibial fractures: early experience using polyaxial locking-plate technology

Authors: contact us about adding a copy of your work at


Between 2004 and 2009, 60 patients with proximal tibial fractures were included in this prospective study. All fractures were treated with the polyaxial locked-plate fixation system (DePuy, Warsaw, IN, USA). Clinical and radiographic data, including fracture pattern, changes in alignment, local and systemic complications, hardware failure and fracture union were analysed. The mean follow-up was 14 (12-36) months. According to the Orthopaedic Trauma Association (OTA) classification, there were five 41-A, 28 41-B and 27 41-C fractures. Fractures were treated percutaneously in 30% of cases. Double-plating was used in 11 cases. All but three fractures progressed to union at a mean of 3.2 (2.5-5) months. There was no evidence of varus collapse as a result of polyaxial screw failure. No plate fractured, and no screw cut out was noted. There was one case of lateral joint collapse (> 10A degrees) in a patient with open bicondylar plateau fracture. The mean Knee Society Score at the time of final follow-up was 91 points, and the mean functional score was 89 points. The polyaxial locking-plate system provided stable fixation of extra-articular and intra-articular proximal tibial fractures and good functional outcomes with a low complication rate.