Authors of section


Richard Buckley, Andrew Sands


Martin Hessmann, Sean Nork, Christoph Sommer, Bruce Twaddle

Executive Editors

Joseph Schatzker, Peter Trafton, Michael Baumgaertner

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Partial articular, depression fracture

In these fractures, the articular surface is partially depressed and broken into several fragments.
They can be classified as:

  • Frontal/coronal fractures (classified by AO/OTA as 43B3.1)
  • Sagittal fractures (classified by AO/OTA as 43B3.2)
  • Fragmentary metaphyseal fractures (classified by AO/OTA as 43B3.3) have articular impaction and extend into the metaphysis

Standard AP and lateral x-rays are taken. More detailed information is provided by CT-scans with 2-D and 3-D reconstructions.

Clinical assessment must include the condition of the soft tissues as well as the sensory and motor function of the foot structures. Special attention is given to any signs of a compartment syndrome.  Standard AP and lateral x-rays are taken. In case of doubt, CT-scans may be helpful to detect or exclude involvement of the articular surface.  For all distal tibia fractures, the fibula must be classified as intact, or fractured into two or multiple fragments.
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