Clavicle fractures have had quite a discussion at the Australian Orthopaedic Association Annual General Meeting 2015 in Brisbane. The results of surgery perhaps aren’t as good as we’d like – whether it be fixed with screws or plates. The results of a non surgical approach probably are fine in 90% of cases, but perhaps 10% ultimately come to surgery for non union of mal-union of the fracture. After surgery, a sling briefly after surgery, and then gradually return to function. Risks of this surgery can’t be understimated, even deaths have been reported in the world literature for fixing clavicles. Time to return to sport depend on the nature of the fracture and whether plate or screw used.
In adults then – there are few clavicle fracture that MUST be fixed, the majority of adults could be fixed if the risk reward ratio seems appropriate for them, Children generally will heal and remodel satisfactorily so it is unusual to recommend surgery in children.