Previous studies have described the mechanism of ankle fractures, their seasonal variation, and fracture patterns but never in conjunction. In addition, the cohorts previously studied were either not from trauma centers or were often dominated by low-energy mechanisms. The present study aimed to describe the epidemiology of ankle fractures presenting to an urban level 1 trauma center. The records from an urban level 1 trauma center located in the Midwestern United States were retrospectively reviewed, and the injury mechanism and energy, time of injury, day of week, month, and patient characteristics (age, gender, comorbidities, smoking status) were collected. The fractures were classified using the AO (Arbeitsgemeinschaft für Osteosynthesefragen), Lauge-Hansen, and Danis-Weber systems. Of these systems, the Lauge-Hansen classification system resulted in the greatest number of “unclassifiable” cases. Most ankle fractures were due to high-energy mechanisms, with motor vehicle collisions the most common high-energy mechanism. The review found that most ankle fractures were malleolar fractures, regardless of the mechanism of injury. The ankle fracture patients had greater rates of obesity, diabetes, and smoking than present in the region where the hospital is located. The fractures were most likely to occur in the afternoon, with more fractures presenting on the weekend than earlier in the week and more fractures in the fall and winter than in the spring and summer. The temporal variation of these fractures should be considered for health services planning, in particular, in regard to resident physician staffing at urban level 1 trauma centers.
©2017 by the American College of Foot and Ankle Surgeons. All rights reserved.
Available at: http://works.bepress.com/theresa-atkinson/9/