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March 4, 1939

FRACTURE OF THE NECK OF THE FEMUR

Author Affiliations

ITHACA, N. Y.

JAMA. 1939;112(9):791-796. doi:10.1001/jama.1939.02800090001001
Abstract

Fracture of the neck of the femur has the highest death rate of any simple fracture of the long bones in advanced middle age or old age. Crippling and permanent disability from nonunion and stiff joints have afflicted nearly half those who survive. The high mortality and serious disability have led to trial of operative internal fixation for many years, with increasing frequency during the past few years.

RELATIVE RESULTS OF CONSERVATIVE AND OPERATIVE TREATMENT  Expert opinion was sought as to the relative value of conservative and of operative treatment by consulting textbooks devoted entirely to fractures and the sections devoted to fractures in systems of surgery.1 There is uniform pessimism concerning prognosis and results, especially with patients over 60 years of age or afflicted with medical complications. All authorities report infrequent bony union and considerable disability. The greater number recommend Whitman's abduction method as the treatment of choice.

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