Can operations achieve good outcomes in elderly patients with Sanders II–III calcaneal fractures?

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Abstract

The aim of this study was to compare the clinical effect of operative treatment and nonoperative treatment for elderly patients with Sanders II–III calcaneal fractures.

The study consisted of 60 patients with Sanders II–III calcaneal fractures who were treated in our institution from January 2007 to April 2012. The clinical effect between the operative treatment group of 32 patients and the nonoperative treatment group of 28 patients was studied. Böhler angle, Gissane angle, subtalar joint motion, calcaneal width, and calcaneal height were measured before and after treatment, and these indexes were also measured on the uninjured foot. All patients were followed-up for at least 2 years, and at the last follow-up, we evaluated foot function that was assessed with the American Orthopaedic Foot and Ankle Society (AOFAS) ankle-hindfoot score system. A 10-cm visual analog scale (VAS) was used to measure the degree of pain.

Böhler angle, Gissane angle, calcaneal width, and calcaneal height, which were preoperatively and postoperatively measured, had a significant difference in the operative group (P < .001), but there was no significant difference between pretreatment and post-treatment in the nonoperative group. Subtalar joint motion was measured pre-treatment and post-treatment and had a significant difference in the 2 groups. When we compared the values of Böhler angle, Gissane angle, subtalar joint motion, calcaneal width, and calcaneal height between post-treatment and the uninjured foot, there was no significant difference in the operative group, but there was a significant difference in the nonoperative group. The values measured after treatment in the 2 groups had a significant difference. Finally, the AOFAS score in the operative group and the nonoperative group were 83.4 ± 9.7 and 74.7 ± 10.3, respectively, and there was a significant difference (P < .001). Also, the 10-cm VAS had a significant difference between the 2 groups.

Good clinical result could be obtained with operative treatment in elderly patients with Sanders II–III calcaneal fractures. Open reduction and internal fixation should be performed if there is no surgical contraindication.

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