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01.12.2018 | Research | Ausgabe 1/2018 Open Access

Patient Safety in Surgery 1/2018

Complications of pelvic and acetabular fractures in 1331 morbidly obese patients (BMI ≥ 40): a retrospective observational study from the National Trauma Data Bank

Patient Safety in Surgery > Ausgabe 1/2018
James T. Carson, Sabin G. Shah, Gezzer Ortega, Sorawut Thamyongkit, Erik A. Hasenboehler, Babar Shafiq



There have been no large-scale epidemiological studies of outcomes and perioperative complications in morbidly obese trauma patients who have sustained closed pelvic ring or acetabular fractures. We examined this population and compared their rate of inpatient complications with that of control patients.


We retrospectively reviewed the records of patients treated for closed pelvic ring or acetabular fracture, aged 16–85 years, with Injury Severity Scores ≤15 from the National Trauma Data Bank Research Dataset for the years 2007 through 2010. The primary outcome of interest was rate of in-hospital complications. Secondary outcomes were length of hospital stay and discharge disposition. Unadjusted differences in complication rates were evaluated using Student t tests and Chi-squared analyses. Multiple logistic and Poisson regression were used to analyze binary outcomes and length of hospital stay, respectively, adjusting for several variables. Statistical significance was defined as p < 0.05.


We included 46,450 patients in our study. Of these patients, 1331 (3%) were morbidly obese (body mass index ≥40) and 45,119 (97%) were used as controls. Morbidly obese patients had significantly higher odds of complication and longer hospital stay in all groups considered except those with pelvic fractures that were treated operatively. In all groups, morbidly obese patients were more likely to be discharged to a skilled nursing/rehabilitation facility compared with control patients.


Morbidly obese patients had higher rates of complications and longer hospital stays and were more likely to be discharged to rehabilitation facilities compared with control patients after pelvic ring or acetabular fracture.
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