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A retrospective insight into patterns of humeral shaft fractures among Nigerians from radiological viewpoint

Vitalis Chukwuma Ezeuko
Loveth Ehijele Esechie
Venessa Eseohe Oigbochie
Edwin Ebho‑Oriaze Ighalo


Background: Fractures of the humeral shaft account for 1–3% of all fractures in adults and for 20% of all humeral fractures in some populations.

Objective: This study was aimed at classifying the pattern of humeral shaft fractures among Nigerian using the Müller’s AO classification system.

Materials and Methods: The study was carried out retrospectively at the Department of Medical Records, National Orthopedic Hospital, Igbobi, Lagos State, Nigeria, using plain films from a total number of 206 patients comprising 140 males and 66 females. Humeral shaft fractures were classified according to Müller’s classification into three main types with three groups in each type.

Results: The result showed that the most frequent type of humeral shaft fractures was simple fractures (76.7% [158/206]) followed by wedge fractures (20.4% [42/206]), whereas the least frequent was the complex fractures (2.9% [6/206]). Among the simple diaphyseal humeral fractures, simple spiral fractures were the most frequent (41.8% [66/168). Among the wedge diaphyseal humeral fractures, spiral wedge fractures were the most frequent (90.5% [38/42]). All the complex diaphyseal humeral fractures were of irregular complex group (12C3; 100% [6/6]).

Conclusion: This study showed to a great extent that there is a pattern for diaphyseal humeral fractures among Nigerians. It goes a long way in equipping surgeons, to allow resources to be allocated on the basis of projected frequency of different types of diaphyseal humeral fractures.

Keywords: Diaphyseal, fractures, humeral, Nigeria, pattern

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eISSN: 1596-2393