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This article has been peer reviewed. It is the authors' final version prior to publication in JBJS reviews, Volume 6, Issue 10, October 2018, Page e7.

The published version is available at Copyright © JBJS


  • Volar locked plating is the most frequently utilized method for internal fixation of distal radial fractures.
  • The overall complication rate for volar plating of distal radial fractures appears to be relatively low compared with other operative fixation methods.
  • Carpal tunnel syndrome is the most commonly reported complication.
  • However, this may occur after a distal radial fracture regardless of treatment method, with reported rates ranging from 0% to 20% with conservative management and 0% to 14% with volar plating.
  • Extensor tendon rupture has been reported at rates of 0% to 4% and is the most frequent complication requiring plate removal.
  • Variable-angle volar locking plates may be associated with fewer implant-related complications as a result of their greater degree of screw placement customization compared with fixed-angle volar locking plates.



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