The aim of this study was to test the null hypothesis that there is no difference, from the payer perspective, in the cost of treatment of a distal radial fracture in an elderly patient, aged > 65 years, between open reduction and internal fixation (ORIF) and closed reduction (CR).Materials and Methods
Data relating to the treatment of these injuries in the elderly between January 2007 and December 2015 were extracted using the Humana and Medicare Advantage Databases. The primary outcome of interest was the cost associated with treatment. Secondary analysis included the cost of common complications. Statistical analysis was performed using a non-parametrict-test and chi-squared test.Results
Our search yielded 8924 patients treated with ORIF and 5629 patients treated with CR. The mean cost of an uncomplicated ORIF was more than a CR ($7749versus$2161). The mean additional cost of a complication in the ORIF group was greater than in the CR group ($1853versus$1362).Conclusion
These findings show that there are greater payer fees associated with ORIF than CR in patients aged > 65 years with a distal radial fracture. CR may be a higher-value intervention in these patients.