We hypothesised that the use of pulsed electromagnetic field (PEMF) bone growth stimulation in acute scaphoid fractures would significantly shorten the time to union and reduce the number of nonunions in a randomised, double-blind, placebo-controlled multicentre trial. A total of 102 patients (78 male, 24 female; mean age 35 years (18 to 77)) from five different medical centres with a unilateral undisplaced acute scaphoid fracture were randomly allocated to PEMF (n = 51) or placebo (n = 51) and assessed with regard to functional and radiological outcomes (multiplanar reconstructed CT scans) at 6, 9, 12, 24 and 52 weeks. The overall time to clinical and radiological healing did not differ significantly between the active PEMF group and the placebo group. We concluded that the addition of PEMF bone growth stimulation to the conservative treatment of acute scaphoid fractures does not accelerate bone healing.
- RANDOMIZED CONTROLLED-TRIALS
- PERCUTANEOUS SCREW FIXATION
- CONSERVATIVE TREATMENT
- CAST IMMOBILIZATION
Hannemann, P. F., van Wezenbeek, M. R., Kolkman, K. A., Twiss, E. L., Berghmans, C. H., Dirven, P. A., Brink, P. R., & Poeze, M. (2014). CT scan-evaluated outcome of pulsed electromagnetic fields in the treatment of acute scaphoid fractures: a randomised, multicentre, double-blind, placebo-controlled trial. The Bone & Joint Journal, 96-B(8), 1070-1076. https://doi.org/10.1302/0301-620X.96B8.33767