Two-view gravity stress imaging protocol for nondisplaced type II supination external rotation ankle fractures: introducing the gravity stress cross-table lateral view
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Assessing ankle stability in nondisplaced Lauge-Hansen supination external rotation type II injuries requires stress imaging. Gravity stress mortise imaging is routinely used as an alternative to manual stress imaging to assess deltoid integrity with the goal of differentiating type II from type IV injuries in cases without a posterior or medial fracture. A type II injury with a nondisplaced fibula fracture is typically treated with cast immobilization, and a type IV injury is considered unstable and often requires operative repair. The present case series (two patients) highlights a standardized 2-view gravity stress imaging protocol and introduces the gravity stress cross-table lateral view. The gravity stress cross-table lateral view provides a more thorough evaluation of the posterior malleolus owing to the slight external rotation and posteriorly directed stress. External rotation also creates less bony overlap between the tibia and fibula, allowing for better visualization of the fibula fracture. Gravity stress imaging confirmed medial-sided injury in both cases, confirming the presence of supination external rotation type IV or bimalleolar equivalent fractures. Open reduction and internal fixation was performed, and both patients achieved radiographic union. No further treatment was required at 21 and 33 months postoperatively.
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