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Table of Contents
Vol. 51, No. 5, 2005
Issue release date: September–October 2005
Section title: Clinical Section
Gerontology 2005;51:329–333
(DOI:10.1159/000086370)

Orthopaedic Injuries following Falls by Hospital In-Patients

Nadkarni J.B. · Iyengar K.P. · Dussa C. · Watwe S. · Vishwanath K.
Department of Orthopaedics, Southport and Ormskirk Hospital NHS Trust, Southport, UK

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Article / Publication Details

First-Page Preview
Abstract of Clinical Section

Received: 12/12/2004
Accepted: 2/23/2005
Published online: 8/24/2005

Number of Print Pages: 5
Number of Figures: 0
Number of Tables: 7

ISSN: 0304-324X (Print)
eISSN: 1423-0003 (Online)

For additional information: http://www.karger.com/GER

Abstract

Background: Falls are one of the most frequent episodes on the hospital wards. Objective: To identify orthopaedic injuries sustained by in-patients falling on the hospital wards and to find out what treatment these required along with the additional time and cost that this incurred. Methods: A retrospective analysis of 900 incident forms and case records was undertaken for a 3-year period. Fractures and other soft-tissue injuries sustained and time, place, and mode of injury were noted. Type of fractures sustained and specific treatment required including operative procedure needed were studied. The cost of each treatment and the total cost in terms of time and money were calculated. Results: We identified 42 patients with orthopaedic injuries; 53% of the falls were recorded on medical wards. A poor pre-fall mobility was an important factor in over 80% of the cases, and a variety of medical conditions pre-existed in the elderly ill patients. Eighteen patients (42%) sustained hip fractures, of whom 15 patients (36%) required surgical treatment. There were 9 deaths in total, 5 of them occurred in patients with hip fractures. The cost of treating the injuries amounted to about GBP 70,000. An additional hospital stay of 56 weeks in total was needed, most patients requiring between 1 and 5 weeks of additional stay. Conclusions: Falls in elderly in-patients can result in a variety of skeletal injuries. These may require major operative procedures and result in significant morbidity and can prove fatal. The treatment of these injuries is a substantial added expenditure to the trust.


Article / Publication Details

First-Page Preview
Abstract of Clinical Section

Received: 12/12/2004
Accepted: 2/23/2005
Published online: 8/24/2005

Number of Print Pages: 5
Number of Figures: 0
Number of Tables: 7

ISSN: 0304-324X (Print)
eISSN: 1423-0003 (Online)

For additional information: http://www.karger.com/GER


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Drug Dosage: The authors and the publisher have exerted every effort to ensure that drug selection and dosage set forth in this text are in accord with current recommendations and practice at the time of publication. However, in view of ongoing research, changes in goverment regulations, and the constant flow of information relating to drug therapy and drug reactions, the reader is urged to check the package insert for each drug for any changes in indications and dosage and for added warnings and precautions. This is particularly important when the recommended agent is a new and/or infrequently employed drug.
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