Despite standard use of chemoprophylaxis, 30-day incidence of venous thromboembolism after geriatric, those older than 60 years, femur fracture surgery is reported to be up to 10%. Missing one dose of enoxaparin has been proven to increase the risk of developing venous thromboembolism. It is commonplace to hold preoperative chemoprophylaxis the morning of surgery because of concern for intraoperative bleeding or wound drainage. We sought to determine whether administration of prophylactic enoxaparin the morning of surgery resulted in an increased rate of blood transfusion or wound drainage in geriatric patients undergoing femur fracture treatment.
We retrospectively reviewed patients older than 60 years who underwent internal fixation of an isolated femur fracture, including femoral neck, intertrochanteric, subtrochanteric, femoral shaft, and distal femur fractures, at a Level 1 trauma center. Medical records, hospital billing data, and radiographs were reviewed to determine patient characteristics such as Charlson Comorbidity Index, enoxaparin dosing, packed red blood cell transfusion, and persistent wound drainage, defined as any drainage requiring utilization of closed incision negative pressure wound therapy. Thirty-day mortality served as the secondary outcome measure.
Five hundred seven patients were included. One hundred sixty-four (32%) received enoxaparin on the morning of surgery, whereas 343 (68%) did not. 27% of patients received PRBC transfusion, and this did not differ between groups (27% vs. 28%, P = 0.72). Subgroup analysis of fixation strategies revealed no difference in the frequency of blood transfusion for any fixation type as related to the timing of enoxaparin dosage. Utilization of closed incision negative pressure wound therapy for the treatment of postoperative wound drainage did not differ between dosing groups. No difference was observed in thirty-day mortality between groups (2.4% vs. 2.7%, P = 0.9).
Administration of a prophylactic dose of enoxaparin on the morning of surgery does not seem to increase the rate of postoperative blood transfusion or wound drainage after fixation of geriatric femur fracture.
Level of Evidence:
Level III, therapeutic.