Open Reduction-Fixation of Mandibular Subcondylar Fractures: A Review

Carol Macarthur, Paul J. Donald, John Knowles, H. Christopher Moore

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

23 Scopus citations


From 1973 to 1990, 392 mandibular subcondylar fractures were treated at the University of California, Davis, by the Otolaryngology Department. Of these, 17% were handled by open reduction and internal fixation. Twenty-one patients from this group were located for follow-up at an average interval of 64 months. Retrospective review shows the operation to be safe, with few complications and no permanent sequelae. Patient examination often revealed abnormalities of occlusion and mandibular function; however, these objective findings did not correlate well with patients' relative lack of subjective complaints. An 86% incidence of roentgenographic evidence of condylar disease after open reduction and internal fixation was found. We question the long-term efficacy of open reduction and internal fixation in restoring fracture alignment and maintaining mandibular height given the high rate (86%) of condylar disease in our patient population.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)403-406
Number of pages4
JournalArchives of Otolaryngology - Head and Neck Surgery
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 1993
Externally publishedYes


ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Otorhinolaryngology
  • Surgery

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