Olecranon fractures are common in the elderly. Articular impaction is encountered occasionally, but the incidence and outcomes after treatment of this injury pattern have not been well characterized.
We evaluated a cohort of geriatric olecranon fractures to determine the incidence of articular impaction and describe a technique for open reduction and internal fixation.
Of the 63 patients in our series, 31 had associated intraarticular impaction (49.2%). Patients with articular impaction did not have significantly different rates of postoperative complications (11/31, 35.5% versus 10/31, 32.3%; P = 1.00) or revision surgery (10/31, 32.3% versus 8/31, 25.8%; P = 0.780) compared with those without articular impaction.
Articular impaction is a common feature of geriatric olecranon fractures. Surgeons must maintain a high index of suspicion and have a surgical plan in place for managing this component of the injury.