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Improving hip fractures outcomes for COPD patients.

Regan EA, Radcliff TA, Henderson WG, Cowper Ripley DC, Maciejewski ML, Vogel WB, Hutt E. Improving hip fractures outcomes for COPD patients. COPD. 2013 Feb 1; 10(1):11-9.

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Hip fractures in the elderly have high rates of mortality and perioperative complications. Both men and COPD patients have worse mortality and complications but this may be due to more co-morbid disease. We assessed mortality and complications in a large cohort (n = 12,646) of men undergoing hip fracture surgery within the Veteran's Health Affairs (VHA) to define the association of COPD to these outcomes after adjusting for other key factors. We looked for opportunities to improve outcomes for COPD patients. Methods: Using the VA Surgical Quality Improvement Program (VASQIP), and administrative databases, we determined COPD status, types of co-morbid conditions and surgical factors, and compared these to outcomes of surgical complications, 30-day and one-year mortality for patients who underwent hip fracture repair during 1998 to 2005. Results: COPD was noted in 47% of the hip fracture patients studied. In 3,261 (26%) cases, the COPD was "severe: (indicated by functional disability, previous hospitalization for exacerbation, chronic drug treatment or record of FEV(1) < 75% predicted), and in 2,736 (21%) cases it was considered "mild" (any previous outpatient visit or hospitalization with a coded diagnosis of COPD). Severe COPD patients had one year mortality of 40.2% compared to 31.0% in mild COPD and 28.8% in non-COPD subjects. Current smoking, use of general anesthesia and delays to surgery were significant modifiable risk factors identified in adjusted models. Osteoporosis was known pre-fracture in only 3% of subjects. Conclusions: COPD was very common in male veterans with hip fractures and was associated with increased risk of death and complications. Increased use of regional anesthesia and urgent scheduling of hip fracture surgery may improve outcomes for patients with COPD. Osteoporosis was rarely identified preoperatively. Improving diagnosis and treatment of osteoporosis in COPD patients could reduce the incidence of hip fractures.

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