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Injury. 2004 Aug;35(8):799-804.

Improvement in the treatment of stable ankle fractures: an audit based approach.

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Department of Orthopaedic Surgery, Blackburn Royal Infirmary, Blackburn BB2 2LR, UK.


Stable ankle fracture patients form a distinct, clinically benign group in which functional treatment can be used. An initial retrospective audit of the fracture clinic records of our institution for 1 calendar year demonstrated that recognition and functional treatment of stable ankle fractures was rarely followed. After the introduction of formal departmental evidence-based guidelines, subsequent audits have showed progressive improvements with significant reductions of time spent immobilised in plaster, time spent non-weight bearing and number of routine check radiographs, without compromising patient safety. This study illustrates the value of evidence-based guidelines in maintaining high standards of care over time.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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