The role of nuclear medicine studies in diagnosing late complications of fractures is described. Static bone scintigraphy is not helpful in predicting delayed or non-union of fractures. Several investigators have developed simple formulae comparing uptake in fracture site with adjacent or contralateral normal bone and described criteria that will predict problems with healing. These types of tests should only be used in patients who are at risk for delayed union. The scintigraphic diagnosis of infection complicating a fracture is difficult. Bone scintigraphy alone is not useful and combined 67Ga/99mTc MDP scanning has been disappointing. Most published series support the role in 111In WBC in this situation, but not all cases are correctly diagnosed. 111In (Chloride) cannot differentiate an infected from a delayed-healing fracture. Bone scintigraphy has a significant role in determining whether a bone graft is viable or not. Reflex sympathetic dystrophy is a rare complication of a fracture; it can be diagnosed by increased periarticular uptake on bone scan in all the joints of the affected part. Bone scintigraphy, especially when done with SPECT, is a very sensitive test for the diagnosis of avascular necrosis (AVN).
View details for Web of Science ID A1988N448200003
View details for PubMedID 3291125