The aging population is growing rapidly and this change results in an increase in the number of fragility fracture patients. Several reports describe their poor outcome. Integrated models of care have been published in order to improve quality of patient care. We established an orthogeriatric model of care at the Department of Trauma Surgery in Innsbruck in cooperation with the Department of Geriatric Medicine (Hochzirl) and the Department for Anesthesiology. This report describes our concept as well as initial experience.
We included all geriatric patients according to the definition of the German Geriatric Society. In all patients, basic demographic data, Charlson Comorbidity Index, and type of fracture were recorded. Main principles of the newly implemented system are the integration of a geriatrician in our team of trauma surgeons and anesthesiologists, prioritization of patients, development of our own clinical treatment guidelines, regular interdisciplinary and interprofessional meetings, a special outpatient clinic for these patients, and the better cooperation with the nearby Department of Geriatric Medicine.
A total of 529 patients met our inclusion criteria during 2010; 77.4% were female and the mean age was 84.1 years. The overall medical complication rate was 20.4%. Of the patients, 36.1% had hip fractures and 70.5% could be operated mainly using spinal anesthesia within 24 h and their mean length of stay was significantly shorter than operations performed 5 years previously. At 3 months, 86.7% of the patients had returned home and, thus, had reached their prefracture residency.
A coordinated, multidisciplinary model for the treatment of fragility fractures has the potential to improve the quality of patient care. Several international studies report superior outcome and our own findings are promising as well. We could show that our major goals, e.g., reduction of complications, shortening the length of stay, and restoration of the prefracture residency, can be improved by implementing such a model.
Useful keywords (using NLM MeSH Indexing)
Aged, 80 and over
Health Services for the Aged/organization*
Patient Care Team/organization*
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