1. A total-contact, lower-extremity plaster device incorporating brace-joints at the knee has been described for the early ambulatory care of healing fractures in the distal part of the femur.
2. Prospective study of consecutive cases has demonstrated no non-unions or refractures in 150 patients treated with traction followed by early mobilization in a cast-brace and a mean healing time of 14.5 weeks. In a similar but smaller group of fractures treated in the traditional manner by preliminary traction and then immobilized in a spica cast, there were three non-unions, and three refractures occurred after longer periods of immobilization.
3. The factor considered most important for rapid and efficient fracture healing is an environment of function for the healing fracture. Ambulatory function is possible with an unfixed healing fracture of the distal part of the femur when appropriate total-contact support to the limb is provided.