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Background: Clinical studies have shown that posterior malleolar fractures treated with a posterior buttress plate have improved outcomes compared to anterior-to-posterior screw fixation. The aim of this study was to evaluate the impact of posterior malleolus fixation on clinical and functional results.
Methods: The patients with posterior malleolar fractures who were treated between January of 2014 and April of 2018 at our hospital were investigated retrospectively. Fifty-five patients included in the study were divided into three groups according to the fixation preferences of fractures (group I, posterior buttress plate; group II, anterior-to-posterior screw; and group III, nonfixated). The groups consisted of 20, nine, and 26 patients, respectively. These patients were analyzed according to demographic data, fixation preferences of fractures, mechanism of injury, hospitalization length of stay, surgical time, syndesmosis screw use, follow-up time, complications, Haraguchi fracture classification, van Dijk classification, American Orthopaedic Foot and Ankle Society score, and plantar pressure analysis.
Results: There were no statistically significant differences between the groups in terms of gender, operation side, injury mechanism, length of stay, anesthesia types, and syndesmotic screw usage. However, when the age, follow-up time, operation time, complications, Haraguchi classification, van Dijk classification, and American Orthopaedic Foot and Ankle Society scores were evaluated, statistically significant differences were observed between the groups. Plantar pressure analysis data showed that group I yielded balanced pressure distribution between both feet compared to the other study groups.
Conclusions: The posterior buttress plating of posterior malleolar fractures yielded better clinical and functional outcomes compared to the anterior-to-posterior screw fixation and nonfixated groups.