Supracondylar, medial epicondyle and lateral condyle fractures are the three most common elbow fractures in pediatric patients. There is a paucity of literature discussing the utilization of physical therapy following these injuries. The purpose of the current study was to determine the rate of utilization of physical therapy after these injuries as well as determine factors that may affect the need for physical therapy after common elbow fractures in pediatric patients. We retrospectively chart reviewed all pediatric elbow fractures that were managed at a major pediatric health system from 2013 to 2020. This study included patients under the age of 18 years and utilized International Classification of Diseases (ICD)-9, ICD-10 and Current Procedural Terminology codes to identify patients. Descriptive statistics, chi-square test and multivariate analyses were performed to compare differences between groups. This study included 2037 patients. Overall, 90 patients (4.4%) received a physical therapy referral at an average time of 90.1 (± 54.6) days between discharge and referral. The rate of physical therapy was 2.7% after nonoperative and 6.3% after operative treatment (P <  0.01). Overall, patients that sustained medial epicondyle fractures were prescribed physical therapy at a higher rate (19.8%) than supracondylar (1.4%) or lateral condyle fractures (5.0%) (P <  0.01). For each fracture type, physical therapy utilization was higher among those treated operatively versus those treated nonoperatively (P <  0.01). Physical therapy is more commonly prescribed for patients with medial epicondyle fractures and patients that received operative management. Additional research is needed to determine clinical indications and efficacy of physical therapy after common elbow fractures in pediatric patients.

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