Fracture rotation

Last revised by Daniel J Bell on 3 Apr 2023

Fracture rotation describes one type of fracture displacement in which there has been a rotation of the distal fracture fragment in relation to the proximal portion. It is often difficult to see on an x-ray, but relatively simple to determine on clinical examination.

Rotation of a fracture may be very important to the patient's function, e.g. rotation in a metacarpal fracture may result in significant disability if the fracture is not reduced appropriately. It is most easily seen when looking at the orientation of the joints above and below a fracture.

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Cases and figures

  • Case 1: spiral tibial fracture with 90 degrees of rotation
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