Background: Pelvic ring and acetabular fractures are the results of high energy trauma, but there is a paucity of information available regarding the incidence and risk factors of venous thromboembolism (VTE) after these injuries in Asians. This study was undertaken to evaluate the incidence of VTE after a pelvic or an acetabular fracture and to identify predictive factors. Methods: A prospective evaluation was performed by indirect computed tomography (CT) venography in patients with pelvic or acetabular fractures. Ninety-five patients were examined by indirect CT venography. Fifty-five patients suffered from a pelvic ring injury (anteroposterior compression 5, lateral compression 25, vertical shear 25), and the remaining 40 from acetabular fractures (simple 18, complex 22). Indirect CT venography was performed within 1-2 weeks of initial trauma. Relationships between VTE and sex, age, fracture pattern, body mass index, injury severity score, period of immobilization, and need for surgical treatment were analyzed. Deep vein thrombosis (DVT) in a more proximal to popliteal vein and the existence of PE were considered clinically significant. Results: Thirty-two patients (33.7 %) were found to have VTE at an average of 11 days after initial injury. Clinically significant DVT was found 20 cases (21.1 %). No statistical difference was found between pelvic ring injuries and acetabular fractures with respect to the development of VTE. For those with pelvic ring injury, the incidence of VTE in those with a vertical shear injury (52 %) was significantly greater than in others with a pelvic ring injury (p = 0.014). Patients with an age >50 were found to be at greater risk of VTE (p = 0.032). Conclusion: Our findings demonstrate that Korean patients with pelvic or acetabular fractures have a higher risk of VTE than is generally believed, and caution should be taken to prevent and treat VTE, especially in high energy pelvic ring injury and elderly patients.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Orthopedics and Sports Medicine