Table A4

Below knee immobilisation

Author, date and countryPatient groupStudy type (level of evidence)OutcomesKey resultsStudy weaknesses
Testroote M et al, 2009, NetherlandsAdult outpatients with lower limb injuries treated in a brace or plaster castSystematic review and meta-analysis of six RCTs (1490 patients). Subgroup analyses included 788 patients managed non-surgically and 894 patients treated in a below knee cast (level of evidence 1–)Overall incidence of DVTPlacebo group: 18.1%, LMWH group: 10% OR 0.49 (95% CI 0.34 to 0.72)Statistical and clinical heterogeneity. The numbers of patients in the included studies are small. The assessment of patients in below knee plaster casts includes patients managed surgically
Incidence of DVT in conservatively managed patientsPlacebo group: 11.3%, LMWH group: 4.2% OR 0.35 (95% CI 0.19 to 0.62)
Incidence of DVT in patients in a below knee POPPlacebo group: 18.6%, LMWH group: 11.8% OR 0.54 (95% CI 0.37 to 0.8)
  • DVT, deep vein thrombosis; LMWH, low molecular weight heparin; RCTs, randomised controlled trials.