Short versus long cephalomedullary nails for pertrochanteric hip fracture

Nicholas B. Frisch, Nickolas J. Nahm, Jad G. Khalil, Clifffford M. Les, Stuart T. Guthrie, Michael A. Charters

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

14 Scopus citations


This study compared patients who underwent treatment with short or long cephalomedullary nails with integrated cephalocervical screws and linear compression. Patients with AO/OTA 31-A2 or A3 pertrochanteric fractures treated with either short (n=72) or long (n=97) InterTAN (Smith & Nephew, Memphis, Tennessee) cephalomedullary nails were reviewed. Information on perioperative measures (estimated blood loss, surgical time, and fluoroscopy time) and postoperative orthopedic complications (infection, implant failure, screw cutout, and periprosthetic femur fracture) was included. Estimated blood loss (short nail, 161 mL; long nail, 208 mL; P=.002) and surgical time (short nail, 64 minutes; long nail, 83 minutes; P=.001) were lower in the short nail group. There were no differences in fluoroscopy time (short nail, 90 seconds; long nail, 142 seconds; P=.071) or rates of infection (short nail, 1.4%; long nail, 3.1%; P=.637) or overall orthopedic complications (short nail, 11.1%; long nail, 9.3%; P=.798) between the 2 groups. The long nail group had a trend toward more screw cutouts (long nail, 5.2%; short nail, 0.0%; P=.134) but fewer periprosthetic femur fractures (short nail, 8.3%; long nail, 0.0%; P=.013). This study found a similar overall rate of orthopedic complications between short and long nails with integrated cephalocervical screws and linear compression. These results confirm the suspected advantages of short nails, including faster surgery and less blood loss; however, the rate of periprosthetic femur fracture remains high, despite changes to implant design.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)83-88
Number of pages6
Issue number2
StatePublished - Mar 1 2017
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery
  • Orthopedics and Sports Medicine


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