Purpose To assess whether or not attempted closed reduction of fifth metacarpal neck fractures results in decreased fracture angulation at final follow-up. Methods Retrospective chart review of all patients aged 18 and older managed for isolated fifth metacarpal neck fractures between 2004 and 2014. Results Sixty-six patients managed for an isolated boxer fracture met inclusion criteria. Twenty-three patients underwent attempted reduction and 43 patients did not. Patients undergoing attempted reduction had a statistically significant improvement in fracture angulation following reduction compared with patients not undergoing attempted reduction. At final follow-up, there was no difference in fracture angle between the 2 groups. Conclusions Closed reduction and splint immobilization of fifth metacarpal neck fractures was not an effective means of maintaining a significant improvement in fracture alignment upon healing. Other means, such as closed reduction with pin fixation or open reduction internal fixation, should be considered when maintenance of reduction is desired. Type of study/level of evidence Therapeutic III.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Orthopedics and Sports Medicine