Proximal femur fractures in COVID-19 emergency: the experience of two Orthopedics and Traumatology Departments in the first eight weeks of the Italian epidemic

Main Article Content

Pietro Maniscalco
Erika Poggiali
Fabrizio Quattrini
Corrado Ciatti
Andrea Magnacavallo
Andrea Vercelli
Marco Domenichini
Enrico Vaienti
Francesco Pogliacomi
Francesco Ceccarelli

Keywords

Coronavirus, Elderly patient, Proximal femur fracture, CoVID-19, Italian outbreak

Abstract

Introduction: CoVID-19 (Coronavirus disease) is a worldwide infection which is causing millions of deaths. A significant number of elderly patients require hospitalization and develop serious and sometimes life-threatening complications. The aim of this study is to evaluate the preliminary impact (8 weeks) of CoVID-19, focusing on proximal femur fractures, analyzing data and results compared to the same period of 2019. Materials and methods: From February 22nd to April 18th, 2020 we surgically treated 121 proximal femur fractures (61 in Piacenza; 60 in Parma, 16 male, 44 female, mean age 81.1). In the same period of 2019, we treated 169 proximal femur fractures (90 in Piacenza, 33 male, 57 female, mean age 81.9; 79 in Parma, 29 males, 50 female, mean age 80.2). We had 21/61 (34.4%) patients resulted positive for COVID-19 and 11/61 in Parma (18.3%), based on nasal-pharyngeal swab, chest CT scan and/or lung US findings. Results: The incidence of proximal femur fractures had a significant reduction during CoVID-19 spread in Piacenza and Parma. Authors have noticed an elevated number of deaths within 21 days after surgery. Piacenza: 4 cases in 2019 (4.4%) and 11 in 2020 (18.0%), of which 9 cases CoVID positive. In Parma in 2019 two deaths were encountered; in 2020 6 patients died and 5 cases were CoVID positive. Conclusion: In the first two months of the Italian epidemic, in the cities of Piacenza and Parma over 80% of deaths have occurred in patients over 70 years old. Even if preliminary, our study shows a significant increase in death in elderly patients surgically treated for proximal femur fractures, particularly in the Piacenza Hospital.

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