Special Issue "Pediatric Fractures"

A special issue of Children (ISSN 2227-9067). This special issue belongs to the section "Pediatric Orthopedics".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: 15 May 2022.

Special Issue Editor

Dr. Christiaan J. A. van Bergen
E-Mail Website1 Website2
Guest Editor
Department of Orthopaedic Surgery, Amphia, PO Box 90150, 4800 RK Breda, The Netherlands
Interests: pediatric orthopedics; fractures; trauma; cartilage; sports

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

Fractures are extremely common in children. The fracture risk in boys is 40% and 28% in girls. Although many pediatric fractures are frequently regarded as “innocent” or “forgiving”, typical complications do occur in this precious population, e.g., premature physeal closure and post-traumatic deformity, which may cause life-long disability.

Despite the high incidence of pediatric injuries, there is still much debate on optimal treatment regimes. Although non-operative and surgical treatment techniques have developed enormously during the past decades, current management is still more eminence-based rather than evidence-based because of the limited scientific evidence. For example, the recently developed comprehensive Dutch clinical practice guideline on diagnosis and treatment of the most common pediatric fractures included almost solely “low” or “very low” level recommendations, based on the Grading of Recommendations Assessment, Development, and Evaluation (GRADE) criteria. The only exceptions were some forearm fracture recommendations, which received “moderate” GRADEs. There is a clear lack of data and a need for higher-level science in pediatric trauma.

The main goal of this Special Issue of Children is to help fill the gap of undiscovered knowledge and improve the scientific understanding of pediatric fractures. Authors are invited to contribute to this Special Issue with original papers and reviews on all aspects related to pediatric fractures, including the diagnosis, treatment, or follow-up of common fractures. Authors are also encouraged to submit papers on specific pediatric injuries, as well as vulnerable populations such as children with bone disease. We also welcome articles that discuss important advancements and novel interventions on closely related topics, including high-energy trauma, perioperative care, and complication management.

Dr. Christiaan J. A. van Bergen
Guest Editor

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Keywords

  • Pediatric orthopedics
  • Fracture
  • Trauma
  • Injury
  • Children
  • Adolescents

Published Papers (12 papers)

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Research

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Article
Bone Fractures Numerical Analysis in a Femur Affected by Osteogenesis Imperfecta
Children 2021, 8(12), 1177; https://doi.org/10.3390/children8121177 - 14 Dec 2021
Viewed by 361
Abstract
This work presents a non-invasive methodology to obtain a three-dimensional femur model of three-year-old infants affected with Osteogenesis Imperfecta (OI) type III. DICOM® Files of a femur were processed to obtain a finite element model to assess the transverse, the oblique, and [...] Read more.
This work presents a non-invasive methodology to obtain a three-dimensional femur model of three-year-old infants affected with Osteogenesis Imperfecta (OI) type III. DICOM® Files of a femur were processed to obtain a finite element model to assess the transverse, the oblique, and the comminuted fractures. The model is evaluated under a normal walking cycle. The loads applied were considered the most critical force generated on the normal walking cycle, and the analyses considered anisotropic bone conditions. The outcome shows stress concentration areas in the central zone of the diaphysis of the femur, and the highest levels of stress occur in the case of the comminuted fracture, while the transverse fracture presents the lowest values. Thus, the method can be helpful for determining the bone fracture behavior of certain pathologies, such as osteogenesis imperfecta, osteopenia, and osteoporosis. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Pediatric Fractures)
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Article
Diagnosis and Treatment for Pediatric Supracondylar Humerus Fractures with Brachial Artery Injuries
Children 2021, 8(10), 933; https://doi.org/10.3390/children8100933 - 18 Oct 2021
Viewed by 456
Abstract
(1) Background: This study aims to describe the clinical and paraclinical characteristics of and the diagnostic approach to brachial artery injuries in pediatric supracondylar humerus fractures, as well as to evaluate intraoperative vascular anatomical lesions and early postoperative results. (2) Methods: A retrospective, [...] Read more.
(1) Background: This study aims to describe the clinical and paraclinical characteristics of and the diagnostic approach to brachial artery injuries in pediatric supracondylar humerus fractures, as well as to evaluate intraoperative vascular anatomical lesions and early postoperative results. (2) Methods: A retrospective, hospital-based analysis of medical records at Viet Duc University Hospital (Vietnam), using a sample of children under 16 years who met the diagnostic criteria for supracondylar humerus fractures with brachial artery injuries between January 2016 and December 2020, was performed. A total of 50 patients were included in the analysis. (3) Results: Out of 50 pediatric patients, 36 patients were male (72%) and the mean age was 5.85 years (range, 1.5–14 years). Before treatment, there were 46 patients with severely displaced fractures which were classified as Gartland type III (92%). Following casting, the percentage of those with severely displaced fractures was reduced significantly to 12%, while there were no patients with Gartland type III fractures after percutaneous pinning. Doppler sonography failed to assess vascular lesions at the fracture site before and after casting in most patients. Two-thirds of surgical cases had only vasospasm, without physical damage to the vessel wall or intravascular thrombosis. Preoperative Doppler spectrum analysis was not consistent with the severity of intraoperative brachial artery injury. Out of 24 patients with vasospasm, we performed vascular blockade using papaverin in 11 cases and intraoperative balloon angioplasty of the brachial artery using the Fogarty catheter in 13 cases. Brachial artery graft was performed with 12 patients who had anatomical damage to the vascular wall. A complication of embolism occurred in one patient immediately after surgery, and two patients had superficial infections. One month following surgery, 2 out of 36 patients had a temporary loss of sensation in the area of incision. (4) Conclusions: Most pediatric patients did not present with symptoms of critical limb ischemia similar to those associated with lower extremity vascular injuries. The diagnosis and treatment of pediatric supracondylar humerus fractures with vascular injury is difficult and time-consuming, especially in cases of transverse fractures. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Pediatric Fractures)
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Article
A Prospective Cohort Study on Quality of Life among the Pediatric Population after Surgery for Recurrent Patellar Dislocation
Children 2021, 8(10), 830; https://doi.org/10.3390/children8100830 - 22 Sep 2021
Viewed by 554
Abstract
Patellofemoral instability is a frequent cause of knee pathology affecting quality of life among the pediatric population. Here, we present a prospective cohort study which included patients who had undergone surgical management using the lateral release and medial imbrication approach (LRMI) or medial [...] Read more.
Patellofemoral instability is a frequent cause of knee pathology affecting quality of life among the pediatric population. Here, we present a prospective cohort study which included patients who had undergone surgical management using the lateral release and medial imbrication approach (LRMI) or medial patellofemoral ligament reconstruction (MPFL-R). The object of this study was to assess the quality of life among children that have undergone surgical treatment for patellar dislocation. Quality of life was assessed before and after surgery using the Pediatric International Knee Documentation Committee form (Pedi-IKDC), a questionnaire that aims to quantify knee functionality. Postoperative scarring was evaluated using The Stony Brook Scar Evaluation Scale. One hundred and eight patients were selected and grouped according to the type of procedure. Before surgery, the two groups had similar mean Pedi-IKDC scores (41,4 MPFL-R vs. 39,4 LRMI p = 0.314). Improvements were observed in the postoperative scores. The MPFL-R technique showed promising outcomes. When comparing the two surgical groups, there was a significant difference in favor of MPFL-R group (MPFL-R 77.71 points vs. LRMI 59.74 points, p < 0.0001–95% CI (11.22–24.72)). Using the Stony Brook Scar Evaluation Scale, a significant difference in scar quality in favor of MPFL-R was observed (4,5 MPFL-R vs. 2,77 LRMI p = 0.002). In conclusion, this study provides objective evidence-based outcome assessments that support the medial patellofemoral ligament reconstruction technique as the gold standard for patellofemoral instability. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Pediatric Fractures)
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Article
Analysis of Clinical Outcome and Predictors of Mortality in Pediatric Trauma Population: Evidence from a 10 Year Analysis in a Single Center
Children 2021, 8(8), 688; https://doi.org/10.3390/children8080688 - 10 Aug 2021
Viewed by 471
Abstract
The shock index (SI) is a useful tool for predicting the injury severity and mortality in patients with trauma. However, pediatric physiology differs from that of adults. In the pediatric trauma population, the shock status may be obscured within the normal range of [...] Read more.
The shock index (SI) is a useful tool for predicting the injury severity and mortality in patients with trauma. However, pediatric physiology differs from that of adults. In the pediatric trauma population, the shock status may be obscured within the normal range of vital signs. Pediatric age-adjusted SI (SIPA) is reported more accurately compared to SI. In our study, we conducted a 10 year retrospective cohort study of pediatric trauma population to evaluate the SI and SIPA in predicting mortality, intensive care unit (ICU) admission, and the need for surgery. This retrospective cohort study included 1265 pediatric trauma patients from January 2009 to June 2019 at the Taipei Tzu Chi Hospital, who had a history of hospitalization. The primary outcome of this investigation was in-hospital mortality, and the secondary outcomes were the length of hospital and ICU stay, operation times, and ICU admission times. The SIPA group can detect changes in vital signs early to reflect shock progression. In the elevated SIPA group, more severe traumatic injuries were identified, including high injury severity score (ISS), revised trauma score (RTS), and new injury severity score (NISS) scores than SI > 0.9. The odds ratio of elevated SIPA and SI (>0.9) to predict ISS ≥ 16 was 3.593 (95% Confidence interval [CI]: 2.175–5.935, p < 0.001) and 2.329 (95% CI: 1.454–3.730, p < 0.001). SI and SIPA are useful for identifying the compensatory phase of shock in prehospital and hospital settings, especially in corresponding normal to low-normal blood pressure. SIPA is effective in predicting the mortality and severity of traumatic injuries in the pediatric population. However, SI and SIPA were not significant predictors of ICU admission and the need for surgery analysis. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Pediatric Fractures)
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Article
Is a Parry Fracture—An Isolated Fracture of the Ulnar Shaft—Associated with the Probability of Abuse in Children between 2 and 16 Years Old?
Children 2021, 8(8), 650; https://doi.org/10.3390/children8080650 - 28 Jul 2021
Viewed by 592
Abstract
A parry fracture is an isolated fracture of the ulnar shaft. It occurs when the ulna receives the full force of an impact when the forearm is raised to protect the face. The aim of this study is to assess a possible association [...] Read more.
A parry fracture is an isolated fracture of the ulnar shaft. It occurs when the ulna receives the full force of an impact when the forearm is raised to protect the face. The aim of this study is to assess a possible association between a parry fracture and the probability of abuse in children. In this retrospective, observational, multicenter study, we identified patients between 2 and 16 years old who had been treated for an isolated ulnar shaft fracture. Patient characteristics were registered, anonymized radiographs were rated, and charts were screened for referral to a child protective team. A total of 36 patients were analyzed. As no referrals were registered during follow-up, the primary outcome was changed to a perpendicular force as trauma mechanism. Univariable regression analysis and independent t-test both showed no significant association between patient factors or radiographic classification, and the reported trauma mechanism. We were unable to determine an association between a parry fracture and the probability of abuse. Since trauma mechanism does have a biomechanical effect on the fracture type, we would advise that a very clear reconstruction (and documentation) of the trauma mechanism should be established when a parry fracture is identified on radiographs. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Pediatric Fractures)
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Article
Effect of the COVID-19 Outbreak on Pediatric Patients’ Admissions to the Emergency Department in an Italian Orthopedic Trauma Hub
Children 2021, 8(8), 645; https://doi.org/10.3390/children8080645 - 27 Jul 2021
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 552
Abstract
Background: The rapid diffusion of Coronavirus disease (COVID-19) in Northern Italy led the Italian government to dictate a national lockdown from 12 March 2020 to 5 May 2020. The aim of this observational cohort study is to analyze the differences in the number [...] Read more.
Background: The rapid diffusion of Coronavirus disease (COVID-19) in Northern Italy led the Italian government to dictate a national lockdown from 12 March 2020 to 5 May 2020. The aim of this observational cohort study is to analyze the differences in the number of pediatric patients’ admission to the Emergency Room (ER) and in the type and causes of injury. Methods: The pediatric population during the pandemic was compared to a similar group of patients admitted to the ER in 2019. Sex, age, triage color-code at admission, cause of trauma and presence of symptoms related to COVID-19 infection, discharge diagnosis and discharge modes were investigated. Results: The lockdown period led to a reduction of 87.0% in ER admissions with a particular decrease in patients older than 12 years old. Moreover, a trend towards more severe codes and an increase in home-related injuries were observed during the pandemic, whereas the diagnosis of fracture was less frequent in the pre-pandemic group (p < 0.0001). Conclusions: A significant decrease in the ER attendances was reported during the lockdown. A shift in the cause and type of injury was observed; only the most serious traumas sought medical care with a higher percentage of severe triage codes and fractures. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Pediatric Fractures)
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Article
Plate Fixation for Irreducible Proximal Humeral Fractures in Children and Adolescents—A Single-Center Case Series of Six Patients
Children 2021, 8(8), 635; https://doi.org/10.3390/children8080635 - 26 Jul 2021
Viewed by 603
Abstract
Background: Recommended treatment for severely displaced proximal humeral fractures in children is the closed reduction and percutaneous fixation by K-wires or intramedullary nailing. Methods: From January 2016 to January 2017 6, 21 children/adolescents (range 8 to 16 years) with proximal humeral fractures were [...] Read more.
Background: Recommended treatment for severely displaced proximal humeral fractures in children is the closed reduction and percutaneous fixation by K-wires or intramedullary nailing. Methods: From January 2016 to January 2017 6, 21 children/adolescents (range 8 to 16 years) with proximal humeral fractures were treated surgically for severe displacement. In these six patients, several attempts of closed reduction were unsuccessful, and an open reduction was performed. The humeral head was fixed with a 3.5 mm T-plate without affecting the growth plate. Plate removal was performed at a mean interval of 132 days after initial surgery. Two years after initial surgery, the clinical outcome was assessed by the Constant–Murley score and QuickDASH score (including sport/music and work) and the shoulder joint was evaluated with a standardized sonographic examination for the rotator cuff and the conjoint tendon. Results: In all six patients, dorsal displacement of the fracture was irreducible due to the interposition of tendinous or osseous structures. Intraoperatively, the interposed structures were the long biceps tendon in two, periosteal tissue in two, a bony fragment in one, and the long biceps tendon together with the conjoint tendon in one case. At mean follow-up of 26 months (range 22 months to 29 months), patients showed very good clinical results with an excellent mean Constant–Murley score of 97.5 (range 91 to 100) and mean QuickDASH score (including sport/music and work) of 5.5 (range 0–20.8). An X-ray follow-up 6 weeks after surgery demonstrated early consolidation and correct alignment in all patients. A sonographic evaluation at 2 years post injury showed that the biceps and the conjoined tendon were intact in all patients. Conclusions: If a proximal humeral fracture is not reducible by closed means, a tissue entrapment (most likely biceps tendon) should be considered. Treatment with an open reduction and plate fixation yields very good clinical and radiological results and preserves interposed structures as the biceps and conjoint tendon. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Pediatric Fractures)
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Article
Diagnostic Accuracy of 3D Ultrasound and Artificial Intelligence for Detection of Pediatric Wrist Injuries
Children 2021, 8(6), 431; https://doi.org/10.3390/children8060431 - 21 May 2021
Viewed by 508
Abstract
Wrist trauma is common in children, typically requiring radiography for diagnosis and treatment planning. However, many children do not have fractures and are unnecessarily exposed to radiation. Ultrasound performed at bedside could detect fractures prior to radiography. Modern tools including three-dimensional ultrasound (3DUS) [...] Read more.
Wrist trauma is common in children, typically requiring radiography for diagnosis and treatment planning. However, many children do not have fractures and are unnecessarily exposed to radiation. Ultrasound performed at bedside could detect fractures prior to radiography. Modern tools including three-dimensional ultrasound (3DUS) and artificial intelligence (AI) have not yet been applied to this task. Our purpose was to assess (1) feasibility, reliability, and accuracy of 3DUS for detection of pediatric wrist fractures, and (2) accuracy of automated fracture detection via AI from 3DUS sweeps. Children presenting to an emergency department with unilateral upper extremity injury to the wrist region were scanned on both the affected and unaffected limb. Radiographs of the symptomatic limb were obtained for comparison. Ultrasound scans were read by three individuals to determine reliability. An AI network was trained and compared against the human readers. Thirty participants were enrolled, resulting in scans from fifty-five wrists. Readers had a combined sensitivity of 1.00 and specificity of 0.90 for fractures. AI interpretation was indistinguishable from human interpretation, with all fractures detected in the test set of 36 images (sensitivity = 1.0). The high sensitivity of 3D ultrasound and automated AI ultrasound interpretation suggests that ultrasound could potentially rule out fractures in the emergency department. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Pediatric Fractures)
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Review

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Review
Pediatric Clavicle Fractures and Congenital Pseudarthrosis Unraveled
Children 2022, 9(1), 49; https://doi.org/10.3390/children9010049 - 03 Jan 2022
Viewed by 123
Abstract
Clavicle fractures are commonly seen in the pediatric and adolescent populations. In contrast, congenital pseudarthrosis of the clavicle is rare. Although both conditions may present with similar signs and symptoms, especially in the very young, clear differences exist. Clavicle fractures are often caused [...] Read more.
Clavicle fractures are commonly seen in the pediatric and adolescent populations. In contrast, congenital pseudarthrosis of the clavicle is rare. Although both conditions may present with similar signs and symptoms, especially in the very young, clear differences exist. Clavicle fractures are often caused by trauma and are tender on palpation, while pseudarthrosis often presents with a painless protuberance on the clavicle, which becomes more prominent as the child grows. Its presence may only become apparent after trauma, as it is usually asymptomatic. The diagnosis is confirmed on plain radiography, which shows typical features to distinguish both entities. Both clavicle fractures and congenital pseudarthrosis are generally treated conservatively with a high success rate. Operative treatment for a fracture can be indicated in the case of an open fracture, severely displaced fracture, floating shoulder, neurovascular complications or polytrauma. Congenital pseudarthrosis requires operative treatment if the patient experiences progressive pain, functional limitation and late-onset thoracic outlet symptoms, but most operations are performed due to esthetic complaints. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Pediatric Fractures)
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Review
NSAID Use and Effects on Pediatric Bone Healing: A Review of Current Literature
Children 2021, 8(9), 821; https://doi.org/10.3390/children8090821 - 18 Sep 2021
Viewed by 365
Abstract
This systematic review evaluates and synthesizes the available peer-reviewed evidence regarding the impact of non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) on fracture healing in skeletally immature patients. Evidence supports the use of NSAIDs in this patient population for adequate pain control without increasing the risk [...] Read more.
This systematic review evaluates and synthesizes the available peer-reviewed evidence regarding the impact of non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) on fracture healing in skeletally immature patients. Evidence supports the use of NSAIDs in this patient population for adequate pain control without increasing the risk of nonunion, particularly in long bone fractures and pseudoarthrosis after spine fusion. However, further clinical studies are needed to fill remaining gaps in knowledge, specifically with respect to the spectrum of available NSAIDs, dosage, and duration of use, in order to make broad evidence-based recommendations regarding the optimal use of NSAIDs during bone healing in skeletally immature patients. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Pediatric Fractures)
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Other

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Systematic Review
The Orthopedic Effects of Electronic Cigarettes: A Systematic Review and Pediatric Case Series
Children 2022, 9(1), 62; https://doi.org/10.3390/children9010062 - 04 Jan 2022
Viewed by 286
Abstract
Electronic cigarette (EC) use is highly prevalent, especially in the adolescent population, where 29% of Canadian adolescents have used an EC in the past thirty days per national surveys. Our pediatric orthopedic referral centre observed a cluster of delayed unions of bone fractures [...] Read more.
Electronic cigarette (EC) use is highly prevalent, especially in the adolescent population, where 29% of Canadian adolescents have used an EC in the past thirty days per national surveys. Our pediatric orthopedic referral centre observed a cluster of delayed unions of bone fractures in adolescents using ECs and present the case series here. We then asked whether electronic cigarettes impair bone healing or influence orthopedic outcomes. A PRISMA-compliant systematic review was carried out, which revealed no human clinical studies and a general paucity of evidence around ECs and musculoskeletal health. The existing experimental evidence relevant to orthopedics is summarized. The effect of ECs on the musculoskeletal system is poorly understood and is a target for further research. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Pediatric Fractures)
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Case Report
Patient-Specific Guided Osteotomy to Correct a Symptomatic Malunion of the Left Forearm
Children 2021, 8(8), 707; https://doi.org/10.3390/children8080707 - 17 Aug 2021
Viewed by 396
Abstract
We present a case report of a 12-year old female with a midshaft forearm fracture. Initial conservative treatment with a cast failed, resulting in a malunion. The malunion resulted in functional impairment for which surgery was indicated. A corrective osteotomy was planned using [...] Read more.
We present a case report of a 12-year old female with a midshaft forearm fracture. Initial conservative treatment with a cast failed, resulting in a malunion. The malunion resulted in functional impairment for which surgery was indicated. A corrective osteotomy was planned using 3D analyses of the preoperative CT-scan. Subsequently, patient-specific guides were printed and used during the procedure to precisely correct the malunion. Three months after surgery, the radiographs showed full consolidation and the patient was pain-free with full range of motion and comparable strength in both forearms. The current case report shows that a corrective osteotomy with patient-specific guides based on preoperative 3D analyses can help surgeons to plan and precisely correct complex malunions resulting in improved functional outcomes. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Pediatric Fractures)
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