, Volume 103, Issue 1, pp 23–30 | Cite as

Pediatric tibia and femur fractures in patients weighing more than 50 kg (110 lb): mini-review on current treatment options and outcome

  • A. Andreacchio
  • F. AlberghinaEmail author
  • L. Marengo
  • F. Canavese


The main objective of this paper is to review the current literature on treatment of tibial and femur fractures in children and adolescents guided by body weight in patients weighing 50 kg (110 lb) or more. A secondary aim of this mini-review was to determine, as per literature review, whether weight  > 50 kg (110 lb) is an identifiable factor associated with increased complication rate. A search of the PubMed/MEDLINE, EMBASE and Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews databases from 1954 to September 2017 was performed to identify papers related to pediatric tibia and femur fractures in children weighing more than 50 kg (110 lb). Abstracts were screened, and relevant full-text articles were retrieved for further review. Reference sections of identified papers were also screened to identify further literature. All levels of evidence were included. Overall, seven full-text articles dealing with pediatric tibia or femur fractures in patients weighing more than 50 kg (110 lb), and one article reporting on both femur and tibia fractures in this patients’ population, have been identified (n = 8 full-text article included). The articles reviewed a total of 679 children. In particular, 48/438 femur shaft fractures (mean weight: 51.7 kg or 113.9 lb) and 91/241 tibia fractures (mean weight: 53.3 kg or 117.5 lb) met the inclusion criteria. The overall rate of complications was 27.9%. In particular, the rate of complication was 51.7 and 29.6% in children with femur and tibia fracture weighing more than 50 kg (110 lb), respectively (p < 0.05). Elastic stable intramedullary nailing (ESIN) has become the treatment of choice for displaced tibia and femur shaft fractures in children between six and 12–15 years of age. Unstable fracture pattern, higher age and higher weight have been reported as potential risk factors associated with poor outcomes in children and adolescents treated with ESIN for displaced long bone fractures of the lower extremity, in particular femur shaft fractures. Despite these findings, data reporting exclusively on ESIN-treated long bone fractures in children weighing 50 kg (110 lb) or more remain scant.


Tibial shaft fractures Femur shaft fractures Overweight Children Elastic stable intramedullary nailing 


Compliance with ethical standards

Conflict of interest

The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.


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Copyright information

© Istituto Ortopedico Rizzoli 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Pediatric Orthopaedic SurgeryRegina Margherita Children’s HospitalTurinItaly
  2. 2.Department of Pediatric SurgeryUniversity Hospital EstaingClermont-FerrandFrance

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