Oropharyngeal dysphagia in an elderly post-operative hip fracture population: a prospective cohort study

Love AL, Cornwell PL, Whitehouse SL.

Age Ageing. 2013 Apr 2

Abstract

BACKGROUND:

normal ageing processes impact on oropharyngeal swallowing function placing older adults at risk of developing oropharyngeal dysphagia (OD). Anecdotal clinical experience has observed that older patients recovering from hip fracture surgery commonly develop OD post-operatively.

OBJECTIVE:

to document the presence of OD following hip fracture surgery, and the factors associated with OD.

METHODS:

one hundred and eighty-one patients with a mean age of 83 years (range: 65-103) admitted to a specialised orthogeriatric unit were assessed for OD post-surgery for hip fracture. Pre-admission, intra-operative and post-operative factors were examined to determine their relationship with the presence of OD.

RESULTS:

OD was found to be present post-operatively in 34% (n = 61) of the current population. Multivariate logistic regression analyses revealed the presence of pre-existing neurological and respiratory medical co-morbidities, presence of post-operative delirium, age and living in a residential aged care facility prior to hospital admission to be associated with the post-operative OD.

CONCLUSION:

these results highlight that OD is present in a large number of the older hip fracture population. Early identification of OD has important implications for the provision of timely dysphagia management that may prevent secondary complications and potentially reduce the hospital length of stay.

ACESSE O PERIÓDICO

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