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Intertrochanteric fractures in elderly high risk patients treated with Ender nails and compression screw

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Author(s): Gangadharan Sidhartha | Nambiar M

Journal: Indian Journal of Orthopaedics
ISSN 0019-5413

Volume: 44;
Issue: 3;
Start page: 289;
Date: 2010;
Original page

Keywords: Compression screw | Ender nails | osteoporosis | inter-trochanteric fracture

ABSTRACT
Background: Ender and Simon Weidner popularized the concept of closed condylocephlic nailing for intertrochanteric fractures in 1970. The clinical experience of authors revealed that Ender nailing alone cannot provide secure fixation in elderly patients with osteoporosis. Hence we conducted a study to evaluate the efficacy of a combined fixation procedure using Ender nails and a cannulated compression screw for intertrochanteric fractures. Materials and Methods: 76 patients with intertrochanteric fractures were treated using intramedullary Ender nails and cannulated compression screw from January 2004 to December 2007. The mean age of the patients was 80 years (range 70-105 years).Using the Evan′s system of classification 49 were stable and 27 unstable fractures. Inclusion criteria was high risk elderly patients (age > 70 years) with intertrochanteric fracture. The exclusion criteria included patients with pressure sores over the trochanteric region. Many patients had pre-existing co-morbidities like diabetes mellitus, hypertension, COPD, ischemic heart disease, CVA and coronary artery bypass surgery. The two Ender nails of 4.5mm each were passed across the fracture site into the proximal neck. This was reinforced with a 6.5 mm cannulated compression screw passed from the sub trochanteric region, across the fracture into the head. Results: The mean follow-up was 14 months (range 9-19 months) Average time to fracture union was 10 weeks (range 6-16 weeks). The mean knee ROM was 130o (± 5o). There was no case of nail penetration into hip joint. In five cases with advanced osteoporosis there was minimal migration of Ender nails distally. Conclusions: The Ender nailing combined with compression screw fixation in cases of intertrochanteric fractures in high risk elderly patients could achieve reliable fracture stability with minimal complications.
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