Distal radius fractures represent 1 of every 6 fractures treated in emergency departments (A&E) each year. This injury has a peak incidence within both the 5- to 24-year-old age group and the elderly female population aged 65 years and older.
Initial trauma mechanism, fracture pattern, associated injuries, and patient age influence treatment and outcome. Although stable fractures are commonly treated conservatively, the past decade has seen changes in surgical practice and techniques. Up to 50% of patients are at risk of losing reduction, and 20%-50% of distal radius fractures will eventually require surgical fixation. Indications for surgery have been extended and refined based on new insight into the pathophysiology of the distal end of the forearm and technological advances in implant design.