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October 25, 1947


Author Affiliations

Birmingham, Ala.

JAMA. 1947;135(8):531. doi:10.1001/jama.1947.02890080061020

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To the Editor:—  Realizing that the term "simple fracture" as generally defined is thoroughly inadequate to describe the trauma received in many so-called simple fractures, I have added a new definition to the simple and compound fracture nomenclature, i. e., "complex simple fracture" (Key, J. A., and Conwell, H. E.: The Management of Fractures, Dislocations and Sprains, ed. 4, St. Louis, C. V. Mosby Company, 1946, pp. 41-43).A complex simple fracture is a fracture which is not compound but which has received severe trauma to either or all of the surrounding soft structures, i. e., skin, muscles, blood vessels and nerves. The bony fragments usually are displaced to a marked degree."Complex," as defined by "Webster's New International Dictionary," unabridged, is as follows: (1) an assemblage of related things; (2) a whole made up of complicated or interrelated parts.The complex simple fracture should be further described as to

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