Improved clinical utility in clavicle fracture decision-making with true orthogonal radiographs

Joshua D. Harris, James C. Latshaw

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

4 Scopus citations


Operative treatment of displaced clavicle fractures has demonstrated lower rates of nonunion and symptomatic malunion, improved functional outcomes, and earlier return to activities versus nonoperative treatment. Surgical treatment may offer a reduction in the relative risk of nonunion and symptomatic malunion and an earlier return to work or sport. To present an easy and safe method of acquiring orthogonal views of the clavicle without any manipulation of the patient′s upper extremity. Academic medical center and private clinic in the Midwestern United States; retrospective patient cohort. We reviewed records of patients with acute clavicle fractures between January 2010 and August 2011. Thirty-four patients were treated with sling immobilization and 52 patients were treated surgically with superior plate and screw internal fixation. Prior to the introduction of orthogonal views, 19 patients were treated nonoperatively and 22 treated with internal fixation. Addition of orthogonal views increased the number of patients treated surgically: In the same period, 15 patients were treated nonoperatively and 30 with internal fixation. Following surgery, patients were evaluated in the outpatient office at 2 and 6 weeks and 3 and 6 months. Nonoperatively treated patients were evaluated at 1, 2, and 4 weeks and 3 and 6 months postinjury. Standard use of orthogonal views has led to greater utilization of surgical treatment of clavicle fractures at our institution and improved both the understanding and treatment of these injuries.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)130-134
Number of pages5
JournalInternational Journal of Shoulder Surgery
Issue number4
StatePublished - Oct 2012


  • clavicle fracture
  • Orthogonal X-ray
  • radiographic study

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery
  • Orthopedics and Sports Medicine


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