A Continuous Infusion Fascia Iliaca Compartment Block in Hip Fracture Patients: A Pilot Study

Elizabeth Dulaney-Cripe, Scott Hadaway, Ryan Bauman, Cathy Trame, Carole Smith, Becky Sillaman, Richard Laughlin


Background: Hip fractures account for 350,000 fractures annually and the projected incidence is expected to exceed 6.3 million by 2050. As the number of hip fractures continues to increase as a result of the aging American population, the importance of limiting and preventing complications is magnified.

Methods: This study demonstrated the clinical effects of a continuous fascia iliaca compartment block placed pre-operatively when combined with a comprehensive pain protocol. All patients who presented to our institution with a hip fracture were given the option of having a continuous fascia iliaca compartment block for pain control versus usual pain management (non-opioids, opioids, and ice therapy). The block was monitored by the pain service until the day of discharge from the hospital. Data was collected regarding mean pain scores, average length of stay and opioid medication use.

Results: There were eighteen males and twenty four females. The pain score on post-operative day zero was reduced from a 2010 annual average of 4.1 to 1.7 in the pilot study group on the visual analog score. On post-operative day one, the 2010 annual average was 2.9 compared to 1.4 in the pilot study group. The length of stay was decreased from the 2010 annual average of 5.9 days to 4.8 days in the pilot study group. The patients used an average of 18mg of morphine equivalent medications during the average infusion time of 40.7 hours. There were no falls or infections noted within our pilot study group.

Conclusions: Overall, it has been noticed that the reduction in opioid usage in this elderly patient population, with an average age of seventy five years, has produced alert and mobile patients often as early as post-operative day one. The length of stay has decreased along with the average pain score in the pilot sample of forty two patients.



Hip fracture; Fascia iliaca compartment block; Pain score

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