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Case Reports in Orthopedics
Volume 2018 (2018), Article ID 6412760, 5 pages
Case Report

Use of the Pelvic C-Clamp to Mitigate Acute Respiratory Distress Syndrome in a Patient with an Unstable Sacral Fracture

Department of Orthopaedic Surgery, New York-Presbyterian Hospital, New York, NY, USA

Correspondence should be addressed to Paul S. Issack

Received 17 November 2017; Revised 13 January 2018; Accepted 30 January 2018; Published 18 February 2018

Academic Editor: Paul E. Di Cesare

Copyright © 2018 Michael J. DeRogatis and Paul S. Issack. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Case. We present the case of a 21-year-old man who fell from a roof, sustaining a displaced sacral fracture with pelvic instability. He developed acute respiratory distress syndrome (ARDS) within 24 hours of injury. Placement of the pelvic C-clamp resulted in rapid resolution of pulmonary dysfunction, allowing for definitive internal fixation. Conclusion. The C-clamp is most commonly used to control hemorrhage in unstable posterior pelvic ring injuries. Our case demonstrates a rare use of the C-clamp to stabilize the posterior pelvis in a patient with an unstable sacral fracture and ARDS, to rapidly improve pulmonary function prior to definitive surgery.