Palmar plating of distal radius fractures : 3-year follow-up with titanium and PEEK plates give similar outcomes


distal radius fracture ; carbon ; PEEK ; radiolucency ; titanium plate

Published online: Nov 22 2021

Josephine Berger-Groch, Ann-Christin Stodtmeister, Jan P. Petersen, Michael Hoffmann

From the Department of Trauma and Orthopaedic Surgery, University Medical Center Hamburg-Eppendorf, Hamburg, Germany


A variety of different plate designs and materials are available to treat distal radius fractures. This study evaluates clinical results with a carbon fibre- reinforced (CFR)-polyether ether ketone (PEEK) plate in comparison to a standard titanium plate.

Thirty-one distal radius fractures were included in this randomised controlled trial. Five fractures were classified as type A, 6 as type B and 20 as type C, in accordance with the AO classification. Patients were randomly allocated into two groups : 15 patients for titanium palmar plating (TPP) and 16 patients for PEEK palmar plating (PPP). Follow-up examinations were set at 2 weeks, 6 weeks, 3 months, 6 months and 3 years postop.

In terms of wrist range of motion, radiological evaluation (alignment and fracture healing), DASH score (Disabilities of Arm, Shoulder and Hand), and VAS (visual analogue scale), no statistically significant differences were detected between the two groups, at all follow-up intervals.

PEEK palmar plating and titanium plates give equivalent clinical and radiological outcomes up to 3 years follow-up.