Article Abstract

3D printing technology for the classification of complex distal humerus fractures

Authors: Thomas M. Gregory, Jaber Alkhaili, Jonathan Silvera, Bruno Vitis, Camilo Chaves, Jules Gregory


Background: Distal humerus fractures consider oneof the most complex fractures with many different classifications used todetermine the severity of the fractures. Recent studies had demonstratedsuperiority of interobserver reliability of classification over others and somestudies showed no superiority of CT over X-ray for the interobserverreliability. The aim of the study was to investigate the three-dimensional (3D)printing technology and its clinical potential in the evaluation of complexdistal humerus fractures and use it as a tool for preoperative planning.
Methods: Eight different complex distalhumerus fractures between 2014 to 2016 in main university hospital wereevaluated by four orthopedic observers (resident, senior registrar, consultantand chief of department) using seven different distal humerus fracturesclassifications. Interobserver agreement was tested by Kappa test.
Results: By using the 3D-printing technologybetween the six different classifications, SOFCOT classification showed thehighest interobserver agreement (κ: 0.67). Thisstudy also showed that interobserver agreement is double when 3D-printing isused.
Conclusions: 3D-printingtechnology is a better mean for evaluating complex distal humerus fracturesbetween different observers and it can be considered as a tool for preoperativeplanning.