Case Study of Hip Fracture in an Older Person

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PurposeTo discuss proximal femoral (hip) fractures as the leading cause of hospitalization for injuries among older persons, using a case example that illustrates not only the orthopedic injury but also how an older person's chronic problems complicate the acute event.Data SourcesExtensive review of scientific literature on the conditions discussed, supplemented by the case study.ConclusionsHip fractures in older adults can present multiple challenges to care when complicated by preexisting or coexisting conditions. This case of an older man with a hip frac-ture emphasizes the resuscitation priorities for the patient found after a “long lie” and the impact of chronic alcoholism and mal-nutrition, which lead to serious complica-tions.Implications for PracticeCareful physical and psychosocial assessment is important for determining the pre-senting problem and comorbid conditions. Priorities for postoperative management of hip fracture and its complications guide the nurse practitioner through the successful return of the patient to the community.

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