We retrospectively evaluated the results for ten patients in whom a malaligned fracture of the distal end of the radius had been treated with early reconstruction (an average of eight weeks [range, six to fourteen weeks] after the injury) consisting of an osteotomy through the site of the fracture, autogenous cancellous iliac-crest bone-grafting, and internal fixation. The results for these patients were compared with those for ten patients in whom functional limitation after complete healing of a fracture of the distal end of the radius in a malreduced position had been treated with late reconstruction (an average of forty weeks [range, thirty to forty-eight weeks] after the injury) consisting of an osteotomy, corticocancellous bone-grafting, and internal fixation.The average duration of follow-up was forty-eight months (range, twenty to 120 months) after the early reconstructions and thirty-four months (range, twenty-four to forty-eight months) after the late reconstructions. After the early reconstructions, flexion of the wrist averaged 45 degrees; extension of the wrist, 52 degrees; pronation of the forearm, 79 degrees; and supination of the forearm, 77 degrees, compared with 42, 45, 77, and 68 degrees, respectively, after the late reconstructions. Grip strength averaged forty-two kilograms after the early reconstructions, compared with twenty-five kilograms after the late ones. One patient from each cohort had mild pain in the radiocarpal joint. According to the scale of Fernandez, there were seven excellent and three good results after the early reconstructions, and one excellent, seven good, and two fair results after the late reconstructions. Complications included a rupture of the extensor pollicis longus tendon twelve weeks after one of the early reconstructions, persistent pain at the donor site of the iliac-crest bone graft after a late reconstruction, and a delayed union that necessitated a second procedure after another late reconstruction.We believe that the results of early and late reconstruction of malunited fractures of the distal end of the radius are comparable. For patients who have radiographic characteristics that are predictive of persistent functional limitation, early reconstruction is technically easier and reduces the over-all period of disability.