Objective: This study aims to determine the prevalence of metabolic disturbance in all fracture nonunion cases and identify the most common endocrine abnormalities seen using a simple screening algorithm. Methods: A retrospective review study was performed evaluating patients who underwent operative intervention for nonunion from January 2010 to December 2018 at 2 level-1 trauma centers. Preoperative laboratory values were recorded for a 9-test “nonunion panel.” A metabolic or endocrine abnormality, specifically an abnormality in the thyroid or parathyroid axis, was evaluated. Results: 42% of patients had an undiagnosed metabolic laboratory abnormality. When multiple tests were used, the rate of metabolic dysfunction was between 60% and 75%, depending on the definition of vitamin D insufficiency vs deficiency used. Conclusion: Results indicate a relatively high prevalence of metabolic disturbance in patients with nonunion and suggest metabolic screening for all nonunion patients not only those without a mechanical or infectious cause. Level of Evidence: IV, retrospective case series.
- endocrine disorders
- fracture nonunion
- metabolic disorders
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Endocrinology, Diabetes and Metabolism