# Strategies for the treatment of femoral fractures in severely injured patients: trends in over two decades from the TraumaRegister DGU ®

Bläsius, Felix M; Laubach, Markus; Andruszkow, Hagen; Lichte, Philipp; Pape, Hans-Christoph; Lefering, Rolf; Horst, Klemens; Hildebrand, Frank (2022). Strategies for the treatment of femoral fractures in severely injured patients: trends in over two decades from the TraumaRegister DGU ®. European Journal of Trauma and Emergency Surgery, 48(3):1769-1778.

## Abstract

PURPOSE

Treatment strategies for femoral fracture stabilisation are well known to have a significant impact on the patient's outcome. Therefore, the optimal choices for both the type of initial fracture stabilisation (external fixation/EF, early total care/ETC, conservative treatment/TC) and the best time point for conversion from temporary to definitive fixation are challenging factors.

PATIENTS

Patients aged ≥ 16 years with moderate and severe trauma documented in the TraumaRegister DGU$^{®}$ between 2002 and 2018 were retrospectively analysed. Demographics, ISS, surgical treatment strategy (ETC vs. EF vs. TC), time for conversion to definitive care, complication (MOF, sepsis) and survival rates were analysed.

RESULTS

In total, 13,091 trauma patients were included. EF patients more often sustained high-energy trauma (car: 43.1 vs. 29.5%, p < 0.001), were younger (40.6 vs. 48.1 years, p < 0.001), were more severely injured (ISS 25.4 vs. 19.1 pts., p < 0.001), and had higher sepsis (11.8 vs. 5.4%, p < 0.001) and MOF rates (33.1 vs. 16.0%, p < 0.001) compared to ETC patients. A shift from ETC to EF was observed. The time until conversion decreased for femoral fractures from 9 to 8 days within the observation period. Sepsis incidences decreased in EF (20.3 to 12.3%, p < 0.001) and ETC (9.1-4.8%, p < 0.001) patients.

CONCLUSIONS

Our results show the changes in the surgical treatment of severely injured patients with femur fractures over a period of almost two decades caused by the introduction of modern surgical strategies (e.g., Safe Definitive Surgery). It remains unclear which subgroups of trauma patients benefit most from these strategies.

## Abstract

PURPOSE

Treatment strategies for femoral fracture stabilisation are well known to have a significant impact on the patient's outcome. Therefore, the optimal choices for both the type of initial fracture stabilisation (external fixation/EF, early total care/ETC, conservative treatment/TC) and the best time point for conversion from temporary to definitive fixation are challenging factors.

PATIENTS

Patients aged ≥ 16 years with moderate and severe trauma documented in the TraumaRegister DGU$^{®}$ between 2002 and 2018 were retrospectively analysed. Demographics, ISS, surgical treatment strategy (ETC vs. EF vs. TC), time for conversion to definitive care, complication (MOF, sepsis) and survival rates were analysed.

RESULTS

In total, 13,091 trauma patients were included. EF patients more often sustained high-energy trauma (car: 43.1 vs. 29.5%, p < 0.001), were younger (40.6 vs. 48.1 years, p < 0.001), were more severely injured (ISS 25.4 vs. 19.1 pts., p < 0.001), and had higher sepsis (11.8 vs. 5.4%, p < 0.001) and MOF rates (33.1 vs. 16.0%, p < 0.001) compared to ETC patients. A shift from ETC to EF was observed. The time until conversion decreased for femoral fractures from 9 to 8 days within the observation period. Sepsis incidences decreased in EF (20.3 to 12.3%, p < 0.001) and ETC (9.1-4.8%, p < 0.001) patients.

CONCLUSIONS

Our results show the changes in the surgical treatment of severely injured patients with femur fractures over a period of almost two decades caused by the introduction of modern surgical strategies (e.g., Safe Definitive Surgery). It remains unclear which subgroups of trauma patients benefit most from these strategies.

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