A comparative study between variable and fixed angle volar locking plates in management of unstable intra-articular distal radius fractures

Chhagan Lal Regar, Siddharath Sharanappa Parmeshwar, Ramesh Chandra Meena, Shyoji Lal Sharma, Jitesh Kumar Jain


Background: The current study is conducted to assess and compare the radiological and functional outcomes between variable and fixed angle volar plating in unstable intra-articular distal radius fractures.

Methods: A prospective study was conducted from May 2018 to May 2020. A total of 156 patients were randomised into two groups A and B of 78 patients each. The plates were T or oblique fixed angle volar plate in group A and variable angle volar plate in group B. Patients were followed up for minimum 12 months. The functional outcome was measured by patient rated hand wrist evaluation score (PRHWE) and radiological outcome by radial height, volar tilt and radial inclination. The secondary objective was to correlate complications.

Results: In our study average PRHWE score was better in group B (p<0.05). Radial height, volar tilt, radial inclination was much closer to anatomical wrist radiology was seen in group B. The most common complication was finger and wrist stiffness in group A.

Conclusions: Patients treated with variable angle volar plate showed better results in functional and radiological outcomes at 12 months follow-up but limitations include short duration of follow up.


Distal radius fractures, PRHWE score, Variable angle volar plate, Fixed angle volar plate

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