This is a fracture-dislocation of the distal radius, sometimes mistaken for a Colles' fracture. The fracture line runs across the volar lip of the radius and into the wrist joint. The hand and the fragment of distal radius undergo a proximal and volar displacement.
A Barton's fracture is unstable and easily redisplaced. It should be fixed internally with a small buttress plate attached to the volar aspect of the radius.
Last reviewed 01/2018