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Geriatric Trauma

Geriatric Trauma is a topic covered in the 5-Minute Emergency Consult.

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  • Geriatric specific considerations and approach to the elderly trauma patient
  • Should be used in conjunction with the accepted standard treatment of traumatic injuries (see trauma, multiple)
  • Advanced age is a known risk factor for adverse outcomes following trauma
  • Generally age >65, age not well defined, difficult to target due to discrepancies between physiologic and chronologic age in individuals


Incidence and Prevalence Estimates


Most common mechanisms:
  • Falls—most common cause of injury in patients of age >65, often occurs on an even, flat surface
  • Motor vehicle crashes—2nd leading cause, most common fatal etiology
  • Pedestrian—motor vehicle collisions, diminished cognitive skills, poor vision/hearing, impaired gait contribute to increased incidence
  • Burns—higher fatality rate than young adults with same extent of burn
  • Violence—less common mechanism than in younger ages, have heightened suspicion for elderly abuse, an under recognized issue
  • Elderly more susceptible to serious injury from low-energy mechanisms

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Rosen, Peter, et al., editors. "Geriatric Trauma." 5-Minute Emergency Consult, 5th ed., Lippincott Williams & Wilkins, 2016. Emergency Central, emergency.unboundmedicine.com/emergency/view/5-Minute_Emergency_Consult/307661/all/Geriatric_Trauma.
Geriatric Trauma. In: Rosen P, Shayne P, Barkin AZ, et al, eds. 5-Minute Emergency Consult. 5th ed. Lippincott Williams & Wilkins; 2016. https://emergency.unboundmedicine.com/emergency/view/5-Minute_Emergency_Consult/307661/all/Geriatric_Trauma. Accessed April 25, 2019.
Geriatric Trauma. (2016). In Rosen, P., Shayne, P., Barkin, A. Z., Wolfe, R. E., Hayden, S. R., Barkin, R. M., & Schaider, J. J. (Eds.), 5-Minute Emergency Consult. Available from https://emergency.unboundmedicine.com/emergency/view/5-Minute_Emergency_Consult/307661/all/Geriatric_Trauma
Geriatric Trauma [Internet]. In: Rosen P, Shayne P, Barkin AZ, Wolfe RE, Hayden SR, Barkin RM, Schaider JJ, editors. 5-Minute Emergency Consult. Lippincott Williams & Wilkins; 2016. [cited 2019 April 25]. Available from: https://emergency.unboundmedicine.com/emergency/view/5-Minute_Emergency_Consult/307661/all/Geriatric_Trauma.
* Article titles in AMA citation format should be in sentence-case
TY - ELEC T1 - Geriatric Trauma ID - 307661 ED - Rosen,Peter, ED - Shayne,Philip, ED - Barkin,Adam Z, ED - Wolfe,Richard E, ED - Hayden,Stephen R, ED - Barkin,Roger M, ED - Schaider,Jeffrey J, BT - 5-Minute Emergency Consult UR - https://emergency.unboundmedicine.com/emergency/view/5-Minute_Emergency_Consult/307661/all/Geriatric_Trauma PB - Lippincott Williams & Wilkins ET - 5 DB - Emergency Central DP - Unbound Medicine ER -