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15.03.2016 | Trauma Surgery | Ausgabe 5/2016

Archives of Orthopaedic and Trauma Surgery 5/2016

Which frailty measure is a good predictor of early post-operative complications in elderly hip fracture patients?

Archives of Orthopaedic and Trauma Surgery > Ausgabe 5/2016
Joanne Kua, Rani Ramason, Ganesan Rajamoney, Mei Sian Chong



Current pre-operative assessment using, e.g., American Society of Anaesthesiologists score does not accurately predict post-operative outcomes following hip fracture. The multidimensional aspect of frailty syndrome makes it a better predictor of post-operative outcomes in hip fracture patients. We aim to discover which frailty measure is more suitable for prediction of early post-operative outcomes in hip fracture patients.


Hundred consecutive hip fracture patients seen by the orthogeriatric service were included. We collected baseline demographic, functional and comorbidity data. In addition to ASA, a single blinded rater measured frailty using two scales (i) modified fried criteria (MFC) and (ii) reported edmonton frail scale (REFS). The MFC adopted a surrogate gait speed measure with two questions: (i) Climbing one flight of stairs and (ii) Ability to walk 1 km in the last 2 weeks. Immediate post-operative complications during the inpatient stay were taken as the primary outcome measure.


Subjects had mean age of 79.1 ± 9.6 years. Sixty six percent were female and 87 % of Chinese ethnicity. Eighty two percent had surgery, of which 37.8 % (n = 31) had post-operative complications. Frailty, measured by MFC (OR 4.46, p = 0.04) and REFS (OR 6.76, p = 0.01) were the only significant predictors of post-operative complications on univariate analyses. In the hierarchical logistic regression model, only REFS (OR 3.42, p = 0.04) predicted early post-operative complications. At 6 months follow-up, REFS significantly predicted [basic activities of daily living (BADL)] function on the multivariable logistic regression models. (BADL, OR 6.19, p = 0.01).


Frailty, measured by the REFS is a good predictor of early post-operative outcomes in our pilot study of older adults undergoing hip surgery. It is also able to predict 6 months BADL function. We intend to review its role in longer-term post-operative outcomes and validate its potential role in pre-operative assessment of older adults undergoing hip surgery.

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