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Pelvic Fracture Risk Assessment on Admission

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Patients with pelvic fractures (PF) have high incidences of associated injuries and mortality. To identify patients with PF at the highest risk for mortality on admission to a Level I trauma center, investigators analyzed 566 PF in 12,128 patients (1996 to 2005). PF were categorized on arrival as high risk (HR) or low risk (LR) by initial blood pressure, examination, radiographs, and CT. HR PF included open fractures, open-book injuries, PF 4 or greater abbreviated injury score, and hypotension (89 mmHg or less systolic blood pressure); all other cases were categorized as LR PF. Patients with PF had 6 per cent (35 of 566) mortality compared with 3 per cent (300 of 11,529) without PF. Mortality was 24 per cent (25 of 103) in HR PF, including 11 per cent (one of nine) of open fractures, 25 per cent (12 of 49) of open-book injuries, 23 per cent (14 of 62) of 4 or greater abbreviated injury score, and 33 per cent (20 of 60) of hypotensive patients compared with 3 per cent (13 of 454) of LR PF. Compared with LR PF, patients with HR PF were younger (43.5 vs 53.8 years) with higher injury severity scores (28.7 vs 11.9) and longer hospital stays (10.6 vs 7.4 days). PF mortality remains high despite treatment in a Level I trauma center. Trauma mechanism, initial blood pressure, pelvic radiography, and CT can be used to predict a patient's mortality risk.
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Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: 1: Trauma Services, 2: Department of Surgery, Fairview Hospital, Cleveland, Ohio 3: Orthopaedics Trauma Services, The Toledo Hospital & Toledo Children's Hospital, Toledo, Ohio;

Publication date: August 1, 2008

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  • The Southeastern Surgical Congress owns and publishes The American Surgeon monthly. It is the official journal of the Congress and the Southern California Chapter of the American College of Surgeons, which all members receive each month. The journal brings up to date clinical advances in surgical knowledge in a popular reference format. In addition to publishing papers presented at the annual meetings of the associated organizations, the journal publishes selected unsolicited manuscripts. If you have a manuscript you'd like to see published in The American Surgeon select "Information for Authors" from the Related Information options below. A Copyright Release Form must accompany all manuscripts submitted.
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