What is internal fixation?
Internal fixation involves setting and stabilizing the fractured bones by cutting open the skin. The bones are realigned to their normal position. Internal fixation uses special implants such as plates, screws, nails, and wires, which hold together the corrected bones.
The advantages of internal fixation are as follows:
- Shorter hospital stay
- Allows the patients to return to the function earlier
- Reduces the chances of improper healing
- Prevents the healing of bone in the improper position
The implants are usually made of stainless steel, titanium, cobalt, or chrome, which are sturdy and strong. Implants are generally compatible with the body and hardly cause any allergic reactions.
What are the general principles of internal fixation?
The general principles of internal fixation are as follows:
- Realignment of the bone fracture to the normal alignment
- Preservation of the blood supply
- Stable internal fixation
- Faster healing for pain-free mobilization of the joints and muscle
- Minimized risk of complications
- Full restoration of function
Stable fixation involves fixation that prevents the movement of the fractured fragments.
Compression on the fractured bone produces friction that prevents the displacement of the fractured fragments and holds it in place. Compression also helps in maintaining a close contact between the fragment surfaces.
The general purposes of implants are
- To provide short-term support
- To maintain alignment during fracture healing
- To allow for rehabilitation