Nightstick fracture (ulna)

Dr Daniel J Bell and Radswiki et al.

Nightstick fractures are isolated fractures of the ulna, typically transverse and located in the mid-diaphysis and usually resulting from a direct blow. It is a characteristic defensive fracture when the patient tries to ward off an overhead blow from an assailant (or local law enforcement officer) branding a bar-like weapon.

Treatment and prognosis

Although typically a closed fracture, they have a higher rate of delayed union or non-union.

History and etymology

Historically this fracture was seen not infrequently due to a strike from a policeman’s baton (known as a nightstick in the USA).


Article information

rID: 12428
Synonyms or Alternate Spellings:
  • Night stick fracture
  • Nightstick fractures

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Cases and figures

  • Figure 1: policeman's baton (nightstick)
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  • Case 1
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  • Case 2
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  • Case 3
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  • Case 4
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  • Case 5
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