Best Evidence Topics
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Pre-hospital use of a traction splint for femoral shaft and lower leg fractures in the same limb

Three Part Question

In [the pre-hospital patient with a mid-shaft femur fracture and a lower leg fracture on the same limb] is [a traction splint] suitable for [immobilisation]?

Clinical Scenario

Ambulance is called to an RTA involving a motor cyclist who has sustained upper and lower leg fractures on the same limb. You wonder whether his leg be immobilised using a traction splint.

Search Strategy

Medline 1966-07/03 using the PubMed interface.
leg injuries (MeSH term) AND (traction splint* OR traction splintage OR traction splinting) AND (immobilisation OR immobilization) LIMIT to human AND English

Search Outcome

Produced 4 papers, of which one was not relevant and the remaining 3 were potentially relevant. On further inspection these were also found to be irrelevant.


None of these papers directly address the specific issue of use of traction splints on upper and lower leg fractures.

Clinical Bottom Line

There is no evidence to support the use of traction splints on lower limbs with both femoral and tibial/fibular fractures.