Humeral shaft nonunions treated with fibular allograft and compression plating.

L. A. Crosby, B. L. Norris, K. D. Dao, M. H. McGuire

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

28 Scopus citations


The present study is a retrospective review of the treatment of 12 humeral shaft nonunions by using an intramedullary allograft with compression plating. The average age of the patients was 61 years (range, 36-82 years). Eight cases involved the proximal shaft, 3 cases were at the mid-diaphyseal level, and 1 case was at the distal one third. Follow-up averaged 30 months (range, 12-96 months). Ten patients (83%) went on to uneventful healing at an average of 3 months after surgery. Two failures involving patients with multiple medical conditions occurred secondary to reinjury. Two cases of postoperative radial nerve neuropraxia involved the posterior approach to the humerus. Each resolved with no long-term residual morbidity. One patient developed postoperative adhesive capsulitis of the shoulder that resolved with nonoperative treatment. We feel that a fibular allograft, along with compression plating, can give satisfactory results for humeral shaft nonunions. This technique can be especially helpful in proximal humeral nonunions and in nonunions involving osteoporotic bone. Patients with multiple medical problems at risk for refalls should be protected until complete healing has occurred.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)45-47
Number of pages3
JournalAmerican journal of orthopedics (Belle Mead, N.J.)
Issue number1
StatePublished - 1 Jan 2000
Externally publishedYes


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