A doctor in Prince Charles Hospital is using a new technique of inserting a curved nail into the bone, resulting in improved treatment and faster recovery times.

Mr Anil Singhal, an associate specialist in Trauma and orthopaedics has fixed 20 tibia (shin) fractures to date with the new approach known as ‘supra patellar approach for Intramedullary Tibial Nailing’.

Surgical times are reduced and patients are exposed to less radiation as they need fewer x rays. Rehabilitation after nail fixation is also much quicker than the traditional methods of several months in plaster.

The tibia, or shinbone, is one of the most commonly fractured long bone in the body and supports most of our bodyweight. A tibial fracture occurs along the length of the bone, below the knee and above the ankle. It typically takes a major force to cause this type of broken leg.

The nail fixation technique (below) is a faster procedure as it is more exact, stabilises the fracture internally without opening the fracture site, and gets patients back on their feet sooner.

Mr Singhal, who has completed 20 procedures to date has generated positive patient feedback:

“This new approach is all about ensuring a better experience for the patient in terms of treatment time and a better outcome,” he said. “It has been humbling to see the results on our patients who have been able to start early rehabilitation. The procedure has distinct surgical advantages in patients with multiple injuries.

“I am proud to work in Cwm Taf Morgannwg UHB which supports innovation at every level to drive improvements for patients and in the trauma and orthopaedic department we have many opportunities to pioneer the latest techniques and treatments.”

Progress on the new method was highlighted at a recent showcase conference of senior doctors within Cwm Taf Morgannwg University Health Board which highlighted the work of SAS (staff and associated specialist) doctors from disciplines such as Ear, Nose and Throat; Surgery and Gerontology.

Prince Charles Hospital trauma surgeon adapts new surgical technique using a nail to fix complex bone fractures