Article

The Impact of Compartment Syndrome on Hospital Length of Stay and Charges Among Adult Patients Admitted With a Fracture of the Tibia

Department of Orthopedic Surgery, Hennepin County Medical Center, Minneapolis, MN 55415, USA.
Journal of orthopaedic trauma (Impact Factor: 1.54). 06/2011; 25(6):355-7. DOI: 10.1097/BOT.0b013e3181f18ad8
Source: PubMed

ABSTRACT To compare hospital charges and length of stay in a series of adult patients with isolated, otherwise uncomplicated tibia fractures with and without acute compartment syndrome (ACS).
Retrospective case-control study.
Urban Level I trauma center.
Forty-six previously healthy adults with isolated tibia fractures (open or closed), with or without ACS but without other complication, associated injury, or social circumstance that influenced hospital stay or charges.
Intramedullary nailing in all patients with immediate fasciotomy and delayed fasciotomy closure in the subset of patients who developed ACS.
Hospital length of stay in days and hospital charges.
Forty-six otherwise uncomplicated patients with isolated tibial shaft fractures were identified. Twelve fractures were open. ACS occurred in five patients, all with closed fractures. In 41 patients without ACS (12 open fractures, 29 closed fractures), the mean hospital stay was 3.0 days and mean hospital charges were $23,800. The five patients with ACS underwent a mean of 1.6 additional surgeries to treat the fasciotomy wound, were hospitalized for a mean of 9.0 days, and the mean hospital charges were $49,700. These differences were highly significant for hospital stay (P < 0.005) and charges (P < 0.00004). In contrast, there were no differences in length of stay or hospital charges in patients with closed or open fractures, respectively.
The cost of ACS is significant, resulting in hospital stays that are increased threefold and hospital charges that are more than doubled in this cohort of patients. The impact of compartment syndrome on these factors was more important than whether the fracture was open or closed. In addition to the obvious benefit to the patient, methods that decrease the incidence of compartment syndrome and need for fasciotomy such as improved diagnosis to prevent unnecessary fasciotomy and methods to reduce intramuscular pressure and avoid fasciotomy in cases of incipient ACS would also be of value in reducing medical costs.

0 Followers
 · 
62 Views
  • [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: We sought to examine the occurrence of acute compartment syndrome (ACS) in the cohort of patients with tibial diaphyseal fractures and to detect associated risk factors that could predict this occurrence. A total of 1,125 patients with tibial diaphyseal fractures that were treated in our centre were included into this retrospective cohort study. All patients were treated with surgical fixation. Among them some were complicated by ACS of the leg. Age, gender, year and mechanism of injury, injury severity score (ISS), fracture characteristics and classifications and the type of fixation, as well as ACS characteristics in affected patients were studied. Of the cohort of patients 772 (69 %) were male (mean age 39.60 ± 15.97 years) and the rest were women (mean age 45.08 ± 19.04 years). ACS of the leg occurred in 87 (7.73 %) of all tibial diaphyseal fractures. The mean age of those patients that developed ACS (33.08 ± 12.8) was significantly lower than those who did not develop it (42.01 ± 17.3, P < 0.001). No significant difference in incidence of ACS was found in open versus closed fractures, between anatomic sites and following IM nailing (P = 0.67). Increasing pain was the most common symptom in 71 % of cases with ACS. We found that younger patients are definitely at a significantly higher risk of ACS following acute tibial diaphyseal fractures. Male gender, open fracture and IM nailing were not risk factors for ACS of the leg associated with tibial diaphyseal fractures in adults. Level IV.
    Journal of Orthopaedics and Traumatology 12/2014; DOI:10.1007/s10195-014-0330-y
  • Source
    SEMERGEN - Medicina de Familia 03/2014;
  • Source
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Compartment syndrome is an elevation of intracompartmental pressure to a level that impairs circulation. While the most common etiology is trauma, other less common etiologies such as burns, emboli, and iatrogenic injuries can be equally troublesome and challenging to diagnose. The sequelae of a delayed diagnosis of compartment syndrome may be devastating. All care providers must understand the etiologies, high-risk situation, and the urgency of intervention.
    HSS Journal 07/2014; 10(2):143-52. DOI:10.1007/s11420-014-9386-8