Predictors of change in 'discharge destination' following treatment for fracture neck of femur.
OBJECTIVES: The purpose of our study was to analyse the incidence and factors predicting the 'change in discharge destination' in patients with fractured neck of femur who were treated surgically. MATERIALS AND METHODS: Fifteen hundred and seventy-three consecutive patients admitted with a fractured neck of femur, residing in their own home prior to admission were studied. Patients who did not have an operation (n=70) for their hip fracture were excluded from the study. Residential location in the UK is broadly categorised as: RESULTS: A downward drift in "discharge destination" of 20% was noted after analysis. Univariate analysis revealed that age, gender, AMT score, place of fall, type of fracture, walking ability outdoor and indoor, ASA grade, medical co-morbidity requiring physician review and delay beyond 36h to surgery had a significant effect. Multiple logistic regression analysis revealed that increasing age, male gender (OR=1.67), accompaniment for outdoor mobilisation (OR=1.96), increasing ASA grade, AMT score <6 (OR=4.86), pre-operative medical condition requiring physician review (OR=2.27), delay greater than 36h for medical reasons (OR=4.38) were predictors of the change in discharge destination. CONCLUSION: The most important predictors of the change in the discharge destination were the medical condition, cognitive and physical function of the patient at admission. Male gender and increasing age were contributory. The only clinician dependent factor that seemed to affect this change of residential status was delay to surgery secondary to medical problems. Awareness of key predictors that affect the "discharge destination" can be useful for the multidisciplinary team and patients' families to evaluate and plan for an early, satisfactory and appropriate referral to either community services or institutional care, which in turn could have a significant socioeconomic impact.