Case Studies Column acetabular fracture - Trauma case

Enhancing Precision in Orthopaedic Trauma: A Case Study on Comminuted Both Column Acetabular Fracture

Case Study
  • Traumatology


A patient presented with severe trauma following a motorcycle accident which resulted in an associated both column fracture of the acetabulum. Due to the severity and comminution of the fracture, 2D imaging did not convey the full extent of the fracture pattern and fragment location. This made it difficult to conceptualize the pathology. The severity of the injury necessitated a higher level of insight.


A physical, 1:1 scale 3D printed model of the patient’s pelvis provided additional insight into the severe injury beyond what was possible by viewing traditional 2D patient scans alone. The model helped the surgical team determine the optimum treatment plan.


With access to the 3D printed model the clinical team came to the consensus that the original plan was to change from a posterior approach to a dual anterior and posterior approach. This was concluded following the difficulty in visualizing the entirety of the fracture pattern, including fragment location that was not seen from the 2D images.


The model allowed the trauma team to gain a much greater insight into the patient’s pathology. With access to the 3D printed model, the optimum surgical treatment was determined; significantly reducing the surgery time and improving patient outcome following this severe fracture.

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