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Geriatr Orthop Surg Rehabil. 2018 Oct 25;9:2151459318806443. doi: 10.1177/2151459318806443. eCollection 2018.

Assessment and Early Management of Pain in Hip Fractures: The Impact of Paracetamol.

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Department of Trauma & Orthopaedics, James Cook University Hospital, Middlesbrough, England.



As the number of patients sustaining hip fractures increases, interventions aimed at improving patient comfort and reducing complication burden acquire increased importance. Frailty, cognitive impairment, and difficulty in assessing pain control characterize this population. In order to inform future care, a review of pain assessment and the use of preoperative intravenous paracetamol (IVP) is presented.

Materials and Methods:

Systematic review of preoperative IVP administration in patients presenting with a hip fracture.


Intravenous paracetamol is effective in the early management of pain control in the hip fracture population. There is a considerable decrease in use of breakthrough pain medications when compared with other pain relief modalities. Additionally, IVP reduces the incidence of opioid-induced complications, reduces length of stay, and lowers mean pain scores. Another significant finding of this study is the poor administration of all analgesics to patients with hip fracture with up to 72% receiving no prehospital analgesia.


The potential benefits of IVP as routine in the early management of hip fracture-related pain are clear. Studies of direct comparison between analgesia regimes to inform optimum bundles of analgesic care are sparse. This study highlights the need for properly constructed pathway-driven comparator studies of contemporary analgesia regimes, with IVP as a central feature to optimize pain control and minimize analgesia-related morbidity in this vulnerable population.


hip fracture; pain assessment; pain management; paracetamol

Conflict of interest statement

Declaration of Conflicting Interests: The author(s) declared no potential conflicts of interest with respect to the research, authorship, and/or publication of this article.

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