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Analysis of clinical characteristics and prevention of traumatic spinal fracture of elderly patients

CHEN Guo-qiang, FANG Xiu-tong, YU Meng   

  1. Department of Orthopaedics, Beijing Shijitan Hospital, Capital Medical University, Beijing 100038, China
  • Online:2014-10-28 Published:2014-10-28
  • Supported by:

    Scientific Research Foundation of Ministry of Education for the Returned Overseas Chinese,2013-1792


Objective To investigate the clinical characteristics of traumatic spinal fractures of the elderly and to provide evidences for improving preventive measures and treatment for elderly patients with spinal fractures. Methods One hundred and sixty eight elderly patients with traumatic spinal fractures were selected. Their clinical data, such as distributions of age and sex, causes of fractures, fractured levels, and osteoporosis levels, etc. were retrospectively analyzed. Results Most patients were 62 to 69 years old, accounting for 64.3% (108/168) of all patients. Falling was the main cause of traumatic spinal fracture, accounting for 51.8% (87/168), and female patients were more than male patients (P<0.05). The rate of falling from high places and hitting by heavy objects of male patients was higher than that of female patients (P<0.05). Among 285 vertebral body fractures, thoracic and lumbar vertebral body fractures accounted for 81.1% (231/285), in which thoracolumbar segment fractures accounted for 54.7% (156/285). The rate of cervical spinal fractures of male patients was significantly higher than that of female patients (P<0.05). The rate of thoracic and thoracolumbar spinal fractures of female patients was significantly higher than that of male patients (P<0.05). The grade of trabecular bone of male and female patients decreased progressively with the age (P<0.05). Among patients with the same age, the grade of trabecular bone of female patients was significantly lower than that of male patients (P<0.05). Conclusion Causes of traumatic spinal fractures and the segments of spinal fractures between elderly male patients and elderly female patients are significantly different. All patients have different degrees of osteoporosis. Prevention of traumatic spinal fractures should be carried out according to the gender difference and their own characteristics.

Key words: elderly, spinal fractures, sex differences, osteoporosis, prevention