Interobserver Variability in the Treatment of Little Finger Metacarpal Neck Fractures
J Hand Surg Am
Purpose To address the null hypothesis that surgeons shown radiographs of little finger metacarpal neck fractures with measured fracture angulation would recommend surgery as often as surgeons shown unmarked radiographs. Methods Members of the Science of Variation Group, an international collaboration of fully trained orthopedic and trauma surgeons, were asked to review 20 little finger metacarpal neck fracture cases, which included a vignette and 3 high-quality radiographs. Members were then randomized to review radiographs with or without measured fracture angulation on the lateral view and select operative or nonoperative management. Results Surgeons shown radiographs with measured angulation were more likely to recommend surgery, and there was less variability among these surgeons, particularly for fractures with less angular deformity. Conclusions Measured fracture angulation has a small but significant influence on treatment recommendations for little finger metacarpal neck fractures. Copyright (C) 2014 by the American Society for Surgery of the Hand. All rights reserved.