Elbow

Monteggia's Fracture

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Monteggia's Fracture, Monteggia's Dislocation, Monteggia Fracture, Monteggia Fracture Dislocation

  • Definitions
  1. Monteggia Fracture
    1. Proximal ulna Fracture AND Radial Head Dislocation
  • Mechanism
  1. Fall on Outstretched Hand WITH
  2. Extended elbow AND Hyperpronated Forearm
  • Signs
  1. Decreased elbow range of motion
  2. Proximal third ulna tenderness, swelling, deformity suggesting Fracture of shaft (typically displaced)
  3. Proximal Radial Head Dislocation
    1. Perform a careful Hand Neurovascular Exam
    2. Risk of Radial Nerve injury (including posterior interosseous nerve which branches from Radial Nerve)
    3. Evaluate extension of thumb, wrist and MCP joint
  • Types
  • Bado Classification
  1. Type 1: Extension (60-70% of Fractures, esp. children)
    1. Radial head dislocates anteriorly
  2. Type 2: Flexion (15% of Fractures, esp. adults)
    1. Radial head dislocates posteriorly or posterior-laterally
  3. Type 3: Lateral (20% of Fractures)
    1. Radial head dislocates laterally or anterior-laterally
  4. Type 4: Combined (1% of Fractures)
    1. Radial head dislocates anteriorly AND
    2. Radial Fracture (in addition to the proximal ulna Fracture)
  1. Ulna Fracture may not be obvious (greenstick Fracture)
  2. Radial Head Dislocation may be overlooked
  3. Xray joint above and below Forearm (standard protocol)
    1. Wrist XRay
    2. Elbow XRay
  • Management
  1. Acute Management
    1. Closed reduction AND Long Arm Splint immobilization for stable, non-displaced Fractures
    2. Emergent orthopedic consult for displaced Monteggia Fracture Dislocations (unstable)
  2. Follow-up with orthopedic surgery
    1. Child: Closed reduction may suffice
    2. Adult: Open reduction and internal fixation (ORIF)
  • References
  1. Hartman, Morrissey and Kiel (2020) Crit Dec Emerg Med 34(1): 16-17