Author(s): oldschmidt MJ, Castiglione CL, Assael LA, Litt MD
PURPOSE: Limited data are currently available regarding the nature of craniomaxillofacial fractures in the geriatric population. This retrospective study reviews 109 hospital records dating from 1981 to mid-1993. The goal of this study was to provide details relevant to these types of injuries.
RESULTS: Most patients were injured in motor vehicle accidents (MVA) or fall-related episodes. Females sustained 43.9% of the fractures while males sustained 56.1%. In females, falls were the most common cause of fractures, while in males MVAs caused the majority of fractures (P < .01). Most fractures were found in the upper midface region (60.3%) and the mandible (27.5%). MVAs and falls were responsible for 82.7% of all mandibular fractures. The majority of fractures were treated nonsurgically (49.5%); however, 37.6% were treated with open reduction and internal fixation. The in-hospital mortality rate was 11.1%, and there were three postoperative complications.
CONCLUSION: The geriatric craniomaxillofacial trauma patient is readily treatable with both aggressive surgical measures and more conservative approaches. Elderly patients often have an underlying medical condition that may subsequently alter the patient's treatment. The findings of this study also suggest that more preventive measures and methods of minimizing mortality and morbidity need to be implemented.