Genitourinary injuries in pelvic fracture morbidity and mortality using the National Trauma Data Bank

Marc A Bjurlin, Richard J Fantus, Michele M Mellett, Sandra M Goble
Journal of Trauma 2009, 67 (5): 1033-9

BACKGROUND: Pelvic fractures from blunt force trauma place the bladder and urethra at risk for injury, often resulting in significant complications. We sought to compare morbidity, mortality, and health care resource utilization in patients with and without genitourinary injuries (GUI) associated with pelvic fractures.

METHODS: In this retrospective study of patients with blunt force pelvic fractures, the incidence of GUI, initial emergency department data, mechanism of injury, morbidity, health care resource utilization, associated injuries, discharge disposition, and mortality were investigated using chi tests for categorical variables and Student's t test for continuous variables comparing pelvic fractures with and without GUI. Multiple logistic regression analysis was used to detect significant predictors of mortality.

RESULTS: Of the 31,380 patients with pelvic fractures, 1,444 had GUI. Men more commonly sustained pelvic fractures with GUI than women (66.14% vs. 33.86%). The incidence of urogenital, bladder, and urethral injuries for men and women was 5.34%, 3.41%, 1.54%, and 3.62%, 3.37%, 0.15%, respectively. Patients with GUI remained hospitalized longer (median 10 vs. 6 d, p < 0.001), had more intensive care unit stay days (median 3 vs. 1 d, p < 0.001), were less often discharged home (31.02% vs. 42.82%), and had an increased mortality rate (13.99% vs. 8.08%, p < 0.001) when compared with patients without GUI. Motor vehicle collisions were the most common mechanism of injury for all pelvic fractures. Spleen and liver were the most commonly injured abdominal organs associated with pelvic fractures as a whole. Pelvic fractures with GUI were more likely to result in associated injuries of the bowel, and reproductive organs. Although GUI was not found to be an independent predictor of mortality, age >or=65 years, initial systolic blood pressure in the emergency department 0 mm Hg to 90 mm Hg, Injury Severity Score >or=25, Glasgow coma score of <or=8, and female gender were independent predictors of mortality.

CONCLUSION: Patients sustaining a pelvic fracture with GUI have an increase in morbidity. Although GUI was not an independent predictor of mortality, patients who sustained a pelvic fracture with GUI had a greater number of concomitant injuries resulting in an increase in overall mortality compared with those without an associated GUI.

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