Outcomes of Displaced and Nondisplaced Pelvic and Sacral Fractures in Elderly Adults


Address correspondence to Simon C. Mears, c/o Elaine P. Henze, Medical Editor and Director, Editorial Services, Department of Orthopaedic Surgery, Johns Hopkins Bayview Medical Center, 4940 Eastern Ave., #A665, Baltimore, MD 21224. E-mail: ehenze1@jhmi.edu


OBJECTIVES: To identify fracture types in a series of older adults with pelvic fractures and to determine whether the type of pelvic fracture affected short-term outcomes and morbidity.

DESIGN: Retrospective chart review.

SETTING: Teaching hospital.

PARTICIPANTS: One hundred eighty-one individuals aged 65 and older with low-energy pelvic fractures.


Fracture type, in-hospital complications, mortality, maximal return to function, and return to living situation.

RESULTS: Of the 181 participants, 119 had unilateral displaced pubic rami fractures, 38 had nondisplaced pubic rami fractures, 14 had sacral insufficiency fractures, and 10 had bilateral displaced pubic rami fractures. There were no significant differences found in participant age; comorbidities; diagnosis of dementia; in-hospital complications; or 30-day, 90-day, or 1-year mortality rates between fracture types. Fracture type did not affect the ability of the participants to return home or their use of ambulatory aid.

CONCLUSION: For older adults, morbidity and mortality rates for nondisplaced pubic rami fractures and sacral insufficiency fractures are similar to those for displaced pelvic fractures.