Assessment of humeral length in dogs after repair of Salter-Harris type IV fracture of the lateral part of the humeral condyle.
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OBJECTIVE: To evaluate the effect of fracture and subsequent repair on future bone growth of the humerus after Salter-Harris type IV fracture of the lateral part of the humeral condyle (LPHC). STUDY DESIGN: Prospective study. ANIMALS: Dogs (n=11). METHODS: Dogs that had LPHC fracture and an open distal humeral physis repaired (1992-2006) were re-examined and radiographed at >or=12 months of age and humeral length was measured. RESULT: Measurements from 11 dogs showed a significant (P=.02) increase in length of the humeral diaphysis of the affected leg compared with that of the intact limb (median, 1.2%; range, 1.3-3.4%). Condylar deformity secondary to growth disturbance was not observed. CONCLUSION: Shortening or growth deformity was not observed after fracture and repair even if a transcondylar screw was placed through the distal humeral growth plate. A mild overgrowth of the humeral diaphysis was observed, although likely considered clinically unimportant. CLINICAL RELEVANCE: Fracture of the LPHC and subsequent repair in dogs >3 months of age do not impair growth of the humeral diaphysis. A transcondylar humeral screw placed through the humeral physis will not result in shortening of the humeral diaphysis. Implant removal to allow for further growth is therefore not indicated.