• physeal plate;
  • pysiological closure;
  • distal radius;
  • fracture;
  • MRI


To have knowledge of the physiological closure of a particular physeal plate is necessary to understand fractures close to the end of growth (transitional fractures). Most frequent fractures involve the distal radius in adolescents. However, there are no systematic investigations on the topic of growth plate closure concerning the distal radius plate, so far. Twenty-two healthy female volunteers underwent MRI investigations of their left wrist. Absolute width, percentage and localization of the physeal part, closed at the time of investigation were recorded. Sequential MRI scans were performed. In this series T1-weighted sequences were most useful to distinguish open and closed parts of the physis. Total area was 291–469 mm2 (average, 399 mm2). It did positively correlate with body height (P < 0.01), but not with weight (P = 0.241) or BMI (P = 0.394). Physeal closure took place at 15–18 years. There was no significant correlation between menarche and closure (P = 0.091). Bony bridging of the growth plate begins centroradial and ends with a small limbus dorsoradial. Sequential scans showed that there are only a few months from beginning to end of physeal closure. Physiological closure of the distal radius growth plate takes place in late adolescence, varying individually. There seems to be no influence of the menarche in female individuals. The process happens within a very short time of less than a year. This may be one rationale for the fact, that transitional fractures of the distal radius are rare. Clin. Anat. 24:1010–1015, 2011. © 2011 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.