Suspension Orthopaedics just announced that their hybrid fixation plate for distal clavicle fractures has received FDA approval. Distal clavicle fractures are extremely difficult to fix surgically. Currently two methods are frequently used to approach this challenging problem. One method is to use a plate with screws to secure the fracture. However, this can be very difficult because there is usually very little to no bone to secure a plate to. Frequently a special hook plate must be used to achieve adequate fixation. Another method is to reconstruct the coracoclavicular ligaments, which are ligaments connecting the coracoid, a part of the scapula, to the clavicle. By reconstructing these ligaments the displaced clavicle is often brought into the appropriate position so the fracture can heal.
In order to better address these complicated fractures, Suspension Othopaedics has designed a unique plating system that creates a hybrid of these two approaches. Their device allows for both fixation to the coracoid while also having the mechanical strength of plate fixation. Hopefully with these two methods joining forces we will begin to see better outcomes for these very difficult to treat fractures.