Orthogeriatrics - Paolo Falaschi and David R. Marsh
Frail, elderly patients with fragility fractures make up a large proportion of the workload of most trauma and orthopaedic (T&O) departments. Their needs are very different from younger patients with musculoskeletal injury or conditions requiring surgery, such as total joint replacements. There is now suffi cient evidence from around the world to say with confi dence that a multidisciplinary approach to their care is not only better for them, but better also for the effi cient and cost-effective running of the T&O unit as a whole.
The editors and most of the authors of this book are active members of the Fragility Fracture Network (FFN) of the Bone and Joint Decade – a global organization that aims to facilitate the ability of health services everywhere to cope with the rising tide of fragility fractures, particularly hip fractures, that is a consequence of ageing populations. The FFN believes that, despite the differences between the health services of different countries, the superiority of multidisciplinary care in this group of patients is universal.
The term ‘orthogeriatrics’ is used as shorthand, because historically it was collaboration between the specialities of orthopaedic surgery and geriatric medicine that generated the evidence supporting the multidisciplinary approach. However, there are obviously many parts of the world where the speciality of geriatrics is not suffi ciently established for this to be feasible.
The purpose of this book is therefore to describe and analyse what are the essential components of the orthogeriatric approach that make a benefi cial difference to the care of elderly fracture patients, so that activists in all countries can plan how to develop the necessary competencies within the available resources and deliver the care that patients need.