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Backslab or full plaster after manipulation of Colles fracture?

Three Part Question

In [elderly patients with a Colles fracture manipulated in the Emergency Department] is [immobilisation in a backslab or full plaster] better at [maintaining fracture position and reducing neurovascular complications]

Clinical Scenario

One of the orthopaedic doctors comes to show you the Xray of a 75 year old woman in whom you mainpulated a Colles fracture under Biers block last week. The fracture has re-displaced. He says that if you had applied a full plaster instead of a backslab the result would have been better. You wonder if this is true.

Search Strategy

Medline 1966- week 3/09/04 using the Ovid interface.
[exp Colles' Fracture/ OR exp Radius Fractures/] AND [exp Casts, Surgical/ OR exp Immobilization/ OR exp Fracture Fixation/ OR OR] LIMIT to human AND English language AND "all aged <65 and over>

Search Outcome

385 papers were found, none of which were relevant.


There is no evidence to answer this question.

Clinical Bottom Line

Local advice should be followed.