Hypothesis or Purpose of the Study: The primary purpose of this study was to measure the outcome of patients with distal radius fractures treated with hand therapy. The second purpose was to compare pain and disability outcomes in this group with a previously reported outcome study of 275 patients. Number, selection criteria, and description of subjects: Over a 14-month period, all patients referred to Desert Hand Therapy in Phoenix, Arizona, with distal radius fractures were enrolled in a cohort study (n=83). Patients were excluded if they were referred for splint fabrication only and no therapy, declined to participate in the study, or sustained concurrent wrist or elbow pathology such as carpal fracture or elbow dislocation. The average age of patients was 49.5 years. In 38 cases the dominant wrist was fractured and in 45 cases the nondominant wrist was fractured. Fifty-seven patients were female and 26 were male. Patients completed an average of 13.3 treatment sessions from initial evaluation to discharge. The largest group, 33 patients (40%), were treated with open reduction using a volar plate and screws. Twenty-five percent were treated with closed reduction and cast, 14% with cast only and no reduction, 12% with percutaneous pinning and cast, 6% with dorsal plate and screws, and 3% with screw fixation and cast.
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Short Description: This presentation discusses the results of a prospective outcome study of 83 patients referred to hand therapy following distal radius fracture. Outcome measures include impairment (range of motion and strength), pain and disability (Patient-rated Wrist Evaluation questionnaire). These results are then compared with a previous outcome study of 275 consecutive distal radius fractures.
© 2006 Hanley & Belfus. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.