Retrospective Study
Copyright ©The Author(s) 2021. Published by Baishideng Publishing Group Inc. All rights reserved.
World J Clin Cases. Sep 26, 2021; 9(27): 8044-8050
Published online Sep 26, 2021. doi: 10.12998/wjcc.v9.i27.8044
Radial nerve recovery following closed nailing of humeral shaft fractures without radial nerve exploration: A retrospective study
Kuei-Lin Yeh, Chen-Kun Liaw, Tai-Yin Wu, Chung-Pei Chen
Kuei-Lin Yeh, Department of Orthopedics, Shin Kong Wu-Ho Su Memorial Hospital, Taipei City 111, Taiwan
Chen-Kun Liaw, Department of Orthopedics, School of Medicine, College of Medicine, Taipei Medical University, Taipei City 11031, Taiwan
Chen-Kun Liaw, Department of Orthopedics, Shuang Ho Hospital, Taipei Medical University, New Taipei City 23561, Taiwan
Chen-Kun Liaw, Graduate Institute of Biomedical Optomechatronics, College of Biomedical Engineering; Research Center of Biomedical Device, Taipei Medical University, Taipei City 11301, Taiwan
Tai-Yin Wu, Department of Family Medicine, Zhongxing Branch, Taipei City Hospital, Taipei City 10341, Taiwan
Tai-Yin Wu, Institute of Epidemiology and Preventive Medicine, National Taiwan University, Taipei City 10055, Taiwan
Tai-Yin Wu, National Taipei University of Nursing and Health Science, Taipei City 11219, Taiwan
Chung-Pei Chen, Department of Orthopedics, Cathay General Hospital, New Taipei City 221, Taiwan
Author contributions: Yeh KL and Chen CP designed and performed the experiments, provided essential mouse strains, analyzed the data, supervised the research, and cowrote the manuscript; Liaw CK, Wu TY, and Yeh KL performed the experiments; Chen CP, Wu TY, and Liaw CK conducted the transporter experiments; Yeh KL, Chen CP, and Wu TY performed the metabolomic analyses; Liaw CK, Yeh KL, and Wu TY designed the experiments and cowrote the manuscript.
Institutional review board statement: This study was approved by the institutional review board of Shin Kong Wu Ho-Su Memorial Hospital on August 4, 2020 (Approval Number: 20200706R).
Informed consent statement: The requirement for informed consent was waived owing to the retrospective study design.
Conflict-of-interest statement: The authors declare no conflicts of interest.
Data sharing statement: The technical appendix, statistical code, and dataset are available from the corresponding author at All participants provided informed consent for data sharing.
Open-Access: This article is an open-access article that was selected by an in-house editor and fully peer-reviewed by external reviewers. It is distributed in accordance with the Creative Commons Attribution NonCommercial (CC BY-NC 4.0) license, which permits others to distribute, remix, adapt, build upon this work non-commercially, and license their derivative works on different terms, provided the original work is properly cited and the use is non-commercial. See:
Corresponding author: Chung-Pei Chen, MD, Doctor, Department of Orthopedics, Cathay General Hospital, No. 2 Lane. 59, Jiancheng Road, Xizhi District, New Taipei City 221, Taiwan.
Received: April 15, 2021
Peer-review started: April 15, 2021
First decision: April 27, 2021
Revised: May 8, 2021
Accepted: August 20, 2021
Article in press: August 20, 2021
Published online: September 26, 2021
Research background

Humeral shaft fractures are commonly associated with radial nerve palsies. The emergence of innovative implants has made the minimally invasive nailing procedure increasingly popular. In this study, we surveyed the recovery time and recovery rate of patients with primary or secondary radial nerve palsies.

Research motivation

No studies have been published on radial nerve recovery after nailing fixation treatment for humeral shaft fractures.

Research objectives

The aim of this study was to evaluate the radial nerve recovery time and rate in primary or secondary radial nerve palsy patients treated for humeral shaft fracture with a nailing fixation technique.

Research methods

In this observational study, we enrolled patients with sustained close or Gustilo open type I humeral shaft fractures who received close nailing fixation treatment between October 2016 and March 2020. We examined the wrist and thumb function preoperatively and postoperatively for all humeral shaft fractures.

Research results

The study results demonstrated that all patients who suffered from radial nerve palsies recovered functionally (100%). The mean recovery time was 4.3 mo.

Research conclusions

This observational study revealed that all patients with radial nerve palsies who underwent close nailing treatment for humeral shaft fracture achieved full recovery.

Research perspectives

Although this observational study was conducted on a small sample, the high radial nerve recovery rate demonstrated that surgeons need not be concerned about permanent nerve injuries.