The Danish Fracture Database can monitor quality of fracture-related surgery, surgeons' experience level and extent of supervision

The Danish Fracture Database collaborators, Thomas Brandi Bloch (Member of author group)

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal articleResearchpeer-review


INTRODUCTION: The importance of supervision and of surgeons' level of experience in relation to patient outcome have been demonstrated in both hip fracture and arthroplasty surgery. The aim of this study was to describe the surgeons' experience level and the extent of supervision for: 1) fracture-related surgery in general; 2) the three most frequent primary operations and reoperations; and 3) primary operations during and outside regular working hours. MATERIAL AND METHODS: A total of 9,767 surgical procedures were identified from the Danish Fracture Database (DFDB). Procedures were grouped based on the surgeons' level of experience, extent of supervision, type (primary, planned secondary or reoperation), classification (AO Muller), and whether they were performed during or outside regular hours. RESULTS: Interns and junior residents combined performed 46% of all procedures. A total of 90% of surgeries by interns were performed under supervision, whereas 32% of operations by junior residents were unsupervised. Supervision was absent in 14-16% and 22-33% of the three most frequent primary procedures and reoperations when performed by interns and junior residents, respectively. The proportion of unsupervised procedures by junior residents grew from 30% during to 40% (p <0.001) outside regular hours. CONCLUSION: Interns and junior residents together performed almost half of all fracture-related surgery. The extent of supervision was generally high; however, a third of the primary procedures performed by junior residents were unsupervised. The extent of unsupervised surgery performed by junior residents was significantly higher outside regular hours.
Original languageEnglish
Article numberA4839
JournalDanish Medical Journal
Issue number6
Pages (from-to)A4839
Publication statusPublished - Jun 2014


  • Reoperation
  • Humans
  • Orthopedics/organization & administration
  • Clinical Competence/standards
  • Orthopedic Procedures/standards
  • After-Hours Care/organization & administration
  • Internship and Residency/organization & administration
  • Databases, Factual
  • Fractures, Bone/surgery
  • Process Assessment, Health Care

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