Journal of Indian Association of Pediatric Surgeons
Journal of Indian Association of Pediatric Surgeons
                                                   Official journal of the Indian Association of Pediatric Surgeons                           
Year : 2011  |  Volume : 16  |  Issue : 1  |  Page : 35--36

Femoral shaft injuries during childbirth

Ram Kinkar Jha, Vivek Trikha 
 Department of Orthopedics, Jai Prakash Narayan Apex Trauma Centre, All India Institute of Medical Sciences, New Delhi - 110 029, India

Correspondence Address:
Vivek Trikha
L-381, Sarita Vihar, New Delhi -110 076

How to cite this article:
Jha RK, Trikha V. Femoral shaft injuries during childbirth.J Indian Assoc Pediatr Surg 2011;16:35-36

How to cite this URL:
Jha RK, Trikha V. Femoral shaft injuries during childbirth. J Indian Assoc Pediatr Surg [serial online] 2011 [cited 2019 Dec 7 ];16:35-36
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Despite major economical and scientific growth, antepartum and postpartum care remains a major challenge in a developing country like India. This becomes more important, when we realize that 70% of our population lives in villages, where home deliveries are still being performed by untrained personnel. [1] The article by Ngom et al. [2] is thus very relevant in our context also.

Obstetrical fractures of shaft of femur though very rare are also seen in our tertiary care trauma center being referred from peripheral hospitals. Ngom et al. have described the mechanism and the treatment plan for such injuries in detail which holds true everywhere. We would like to add that strapping of thigh with the abdomen also as a treatment modality in that list because of various reasons. [3],[4],[5] First, it is an inexpensive modality and can be applied by primary health care providers in remote villages also. Secondly, it has got high acceptance by parents because it is comfortable for neonates and ensures easy care for mother. Third, outcome in terms of fracture union and deformity are comparable to any other treatment modalities. [3],[4] This method also avoids the use of any Plaster of Paris or traction for the neonate, which may not be accessible in remote areas. In addition, Plaster of Paris casts have their own disadvantages of skin problems and compartment syndromes.

Newborns have a natural tendency to keep the hip and knee in flexed position. In case of fracture shaft of femur, when a plaster in extension is applied, it causes fracture to angulate. With strapping, the hip is flexed and the femur is splinted with the abdomen using soft adhesive dressing. This relaxes the hip flexors and helps in fracture reduction and maintaining fracture alignment. In neonates, anatomic reduction for the diaphyseal fractures is not mandatory as they have a very high remodeling rate. The aim of strapping is to adequately splint the fracture in an acceptable position for a period till the fracture is "sticky". This strapping is usually kept for 2 weeks as the fracture becomes immobile. During this period, the bandage may need readjustment as it becomes loose. When followed up for long period, fractures managed by this method have yielded satisfactory results in terms of union, appearance, and functions. [3],[4]


1Registrar General of India, Ministry of Home Affairs, Gal, SRS Bulletin, Vol. 37, No.2, Oct 2003.
2Ngom G, Fall M, Amadou A, Munyali DA. Obstetrical fractures of the femur in developing countries: Predisposing factors and therapeutic approach. J Indian Assoc Pediatr Surg 2010;15:112.
3Gupta RC, Varma AN, Mittal KK. Treatment of femoral diaphyseal fractures in children by strapping. Injury 1980;12:234-8.
4Rijal L, Ansari T, Trikha V, Yadhav CS. Birth injuries in caesarian sections: cases of fracture femur and humerus following caesarian section. Nepal Med Coll J 2009;11:207-8.
5Stannard JP, Christensen KP, Wilkins KE. Femur fractures in infants: a new therapeutic approach. J Pediatr Orthop 1995;15:461.