Association of scapholunate dissociation and two-part articular fractures of the distal radius

Grace Sun, Simon MacLean, Justin Alexander, Richard Woodman, Gregory Bain

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5 Citations (Scopus)


Scapholunate dissociation may occur in association with distal radial fractures and is easily missed at initial presentation. The aim of this study was to examine variances in the scapholunate distance with respect to subtypes of two-part partial articular distal radial fractures. Axial computed tomography (CT) scans of acute two-part intra-articular radial fractures were assessed retrospectively from 80 patients and compared to 20 controls. From each scan, two images were analysed to identify the scaphoid, lunate and articular fracture line in the distal radius for fracture type categorization. The images were overlaid on a standardized distal radius template and the scapholunate distance measured. Significant increase in the scapholunate distance was noted in fracture subtypes: radial styloid oblique; dorsal ulnar column; sagittal ulnar column; and volar coronal. We conclude that these findings support the need for a higher index of suspicion for scapholunate dissociation in these distal radial fracture subtypes. Level of evidence: III

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)468-474
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of Hand Surgery (European Volume)
Issue number5
Early online date2019
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jun 2019


  • Carpus
  • computed tomography (CT)
  • distal radial fracture
  • instability
  • scapholunate distance


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