Characteristics of Orbital Floor Fractures in the United States from 2006 to 2017


      To examine the incidence, characteristics, and economic burden of orbital floor fractures in the United States.


      Retrospective, longitudinal study of the Nationwide Emergency Department Sample (NEDS).


      Patients in the Emergency Department (ED).


      The NEDS, a representative sample of all hospital-based EDs in the US, was used to identify and describe ED visits with a primary diagnosis of orbital floor fracture from 2006 to 2017. Linear regression was used to estimate the trends in annual incidence and inflation-adjusted ED charges. Logistic regression was used to assess variables associated with inpatient admission.

      Main Outcome Measures

      Incidence, injury mechanisms, demographics, clinical characteristics, disposition, and economic burden.


      From 2006 to 2017, there were an estimated 350 379 ED visits in the US with a primary diagnosis of orbital floor fracture. The incidence increased by 47% over the study period (P < 0.001): from 7.7 (95% confidence interval [CI], 6.9–8.5) to 11.3 (95% CI, 10.0–12.6) per 100 000 population. The majority were male (67%), aged 21 to 44 years (46%), and from low-income households (32%). The most common cause was assault (43%), which was most frequent in young adults (65%) and increased modestly over time (3.5 to 4.5 per 100 000 population; P = 0.02). The second most common cause was falls (26%), most frequent in patients aged ≥65 years (86%) and more than doubled over time (1.6 to 3.5 per 100 000 population; P < 0.001). The rate of inpatient admission was 14%, with a higher likelihood for patients aged ≥65 years (odds ratio [OR], 2.21; 95% CI, 1.99–2.46; P < 0.001) and falls (OR, 1.54; 95% CI, 1.27–1.86; P < 0.001). The total inflation-adjusted ED charges over the study period exceeded $2 billion, with the mean charge per visit increasing 48% (P < 0.001): from $5881 (95% CI, 5499–6263) to $8728 (95% CI, 8074–9382).


      Orbital floor fractures are becoming an increasingly common and costly injury in the United States. Preventive strategies aimed at reducing assault and falls will be crucial to mitigate the burden of orbital floor fractures on the healthcare system.


      Abbreviations and Acronyms:

      CI (confidence interval), ED (emergency department), HCUP (Healthcare Cost and Utilization Project), ICD (International Classification of Diseases), NEDS (Nationwide Emergency Department Sample), OR (odds ratio)
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