Operative treatment of multiple costochondral dislocations in a patient with severe rib fractures and a flail chest following trauma

Jonne T.H. Prins*, Mathieu M.E. Wijffels

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

Abstract

A 73-year-old male patient underwent operative treatment for dislocation of multiple costochondral junctions alongside multiple bony rib fractures and a flail chest following high-energy trauma. During the operative fixation of the flail chest, the costochondral lesions were surgically stabilised with plates and screws, which were fixated on the osseous anterior rib, sternum or the rib cartilage. The patient experienced no pulmonary complications during the primary admission. At 7 months after the trauma, the chest CT scan showed full consolidation of all fixated rib fractures, including the costochondral lesions, without hardware dislocation or complications. The patient did not require any pain medication and had no pain during daily activities, at rest or at night. Although being a biomechanically demanding region, which is often not defined in current rib fracture classification, operative treatment of costochondral lesions is feasible with outcome similar to the treatment of bony rib fractures.

Original languageEnglish
Article number239511
JournalBMJ Case Reports
Volume14
Issue number3
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2 Mar 2021

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