Patient satisfaction after hook plate treatment of bony avulsion fracture of the distal phalanges

H. Vester, L. Schul, F. Von Matthey, M. Beirer, M. Van Griensven, S. Deiler

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

6 Scopus citations


Background: Bony avulsion fractures of the distal phalanges can result in mallet finger deformity if not treated appropriately. Therefore, only minimally displaced fractures can be treated conservatively with a good outcome, as dislocation occurs very often. Several surgical treatment options have been developed during the past decades. Data concerning the recently developed hook plate are promising. So far, no data concerning the subjective satisfaction with this method have been published. Therefore, we have analyzed the outcome after hook plate implantation using a self-assessment score, which focuses also on subjective parameters and satisfaction. Methods: Standardized questionnaires (self-assessment scores and SF-36 questionnaire) were sent to each patient treated with a hook plate due to fracture of the distal phalanx, type Doyle IVb and IVc. Clinical data were evaluated according to the medical record. Scores given per question range from 0 to 10, 10 is the worst and 0 the best outcome. Results: From 69 patients treated, 38 (58%) were enrolled. The whole collective (n = 38) reached a score of 39.7 ± 28.7 points, while men had slightly better results. Men (n = 24) achieved 37.3 ± 27.9 points, women (n = 14) 43.9 ± 30.7 points. Women had significantly better results when analyzed later than 12 months after surgery (52.1 ± 27.9 vs. 29.1 ± 32.8), whereas no changes could be detected in the male group (37.1 ± 29.9 vs. 37.4 ± 27.6). Overall, men were slightly more satisfied than women. Most satisfaction was found regarding pain and fine motor skills (0-0.46 points). Esthetic aspect and nail deformities (3.65 points average) led to the highest dissatisfaction. No differences in the SF 36 score could be detected. Conclusions: The hook plate is not only a convenient method but it also results in high patient satisfaction. Nail deformities are challenging; however, with increasing experience of the surgeon they decrease. SF 36 score is not an appropriate testing tool for this problem.

Original languageEnglish
Article number35
JournalEuropean Journal of Medical Research
Issue number1
StatePublished - 20 Jul 2018
Externally publishedYes


  • Avulsion fracture
  • Hook plate
  • Mallet fracture
  • Self-assessment score


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