Absorbable implants versus metal implants for the treatment of ankle fractures: A meta-analysis.

TitleAbsorbable implants versus metal implants for the treatment of ankle fractures: A meta-analysis.
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2013
AuthorsLi Z-H, Yu A-X, Guo X-P, Qi B-W, Zhou M, Wang W-Y
JournalExperimental and therapeutic medicine
Date Published2013 May

This meta-analysis was performed to evaluate the efficiency and the safety of absorbable implants. Five major electronic databases (PubMed, Embase, Cochrane Library, SinoMed and Wanfang Data) were systematically searched for randomized controlled trials (RCTs) from their establishment to November 2012. Studies on absorbable implants and metal implants for ankle fractures were selected. The meta-analysis was performed using RevMan 5.1. Ten studies with 762 patients were included and analyzed. Compared with metal implants, absorbable implants used for the internal fixation of ankle fractures produce similar radiographic and functional outcomes (P= 0.52). Normally, removal of the internal fixation is unnecessary (P<0.0001) and the incidence of palpable implants is lower (P=0.02) for absorbable implants. No statistically significant difference was observed between the two groups with regard to foreign body reactions (P=0.07), infection (P= 0.69), osteoarthritis (P= 0.39), pain (P= 0.06), refracture (P=0.67), skin necrosis (P=0.99), deep vein thrombosis (P=0.21) and nerve injury (P=0.94). Absorbable implants used in ankle fractures rarely require reoperation and result in similar functional outcomes and complications compared with metal implants. These characteristics make them efficient and reasonably safe for the treatment of ankle fractures.

Alternate JournalExp Ther Med