Management of Acetabular Fractures in the Elderly

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Abstract

The incidence of acetabular fractures in the elderly population is increasing. Fractures in this population differ from those in younger patients, with more frequent involvement of the anterior column, more comminution, and more severe articular impaction in elderly patients. Although acetabular fractures in geriatric patients are more likely the result of low-energy trauma, outcomes are generally poorer than those in young patients. Multiple management options have been proposed, but no intervention has become the standard of care for these fractures in the elderly. Patient characteristics (eg, prior ambulation status, functional capacity, bone quality), the nature of the fracture, and the experience of the treating orthopaedic surgeon all must be considered when choosing among nonsurgical treatment, percutaneous fixation, open reduction and internal fixation, and immediate or delayed arthroplasty. Each treatment option has the potential for satisfactory results in properly selected patients.

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