Surgical delay of more than 2 calendar days after hospitalization approximately doubles the risk of death within 1 year of surgery for hip fractures.1 However, when medical circumstances do not allow this time course to surgery and the surgery is not an emergency (eg, vascular compromise of the extremity), it is more important to ensure the patient has a complete medical evaluation and has medical problems corrected before proceeding with surgery. Once the patient is stable, surgery should proceed on an urgent basis.
1. Zuckerman JD, Skovron ML, Koval KJ, et al. Postoperative complications and mortality associated with operative delay in older patients who have a fracture of the hip. J Bone Joint Surg Am 1995;77:1551-6.
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