Polytrauma in geriatric patients: incidence and mortality
© Famà et al; licensee BioMed Central Ltd. 2011
Published: 24 August 2011
The increase of traumatic events involving geriatric patients is due to longer life expectancy and a progressive improvement of quality of life. More and more elderly subjects carry out various activities, however because of physical frailty, activity exposes them to the risk of injuries and accidents. They are more susceptible to traumatic injuries of road traffic accidents. Our objective was to analyze how increased age and the presence of several related diseases have contributed to an increase in the incidence of multiple trauma in the last 3 years.
Materials and methods
The most recurrent fracture was the fracture of the femur 513 (16.72%), especially in women (possibly secondary to osteoporosis).
Also numerous were fractures of the upper limbs (N=474) and rib fractures (N=333). In 40% of cases (1227) the trauma was related to a syncope event. 1981 patients required hospitalization, predominantly in Orthopaedics and Traumatology (N=582), in neurological wards (N=170), in Thoracic Surgery (N=107) and 235 in other departments. In the Emergency Department (UOC MCAU with OB), no death for geriatric trauma was observed.
The most frequent traumatic event is represented by falls, often associated with syncopal events, very frequent syndrome in geriatrics. In road traffic trauma, the geriatric patient is more often a pedestrian, therefore, the risk of back injuries and fractures is significantly higher, and the risk of permanent disability or death is high.
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