Faculty Advisor(s)

Matthew Somma

Document Type

Course Paper

Publication Date



© 2018 Brittany Gray


Background and Purpose: Femur fractures lead to significant functional deficits resulting in major healthcare expenses. This case report accounts the outcomes of skilled physical therapy interventions for treatment of an intramedullary nail fixation of a subtrochanteric fracture. The purpose of this case report was to demonstrate the use of physical therapy in regaining strength, range of motion, and improving gait and balance deficits post femur fracture. The combination of the patient’s age, mechanism of injury, post-surgical complications, and delayed full weight bearing status make this case distinctive in nature. Case Description: The patient was a 47-year-old male who presented to physical therapy for an intramedullary nail fixation of a subtrochanteric femur fracture sustained during a motor vehicle accident. He developed a post-operative deep vein thrombosis resulting in an 11-day hospitalization. He completed four weeks of home health physical therapy prior to transitioning to skilled outpatient therapy where he was seen three times per week for nine weeks. His chief complaints were his inability to work, limitation in weight bearing status, and lack of functional independence with activities of daily living. Outcomes: The patient met all short-term goals and improved his active range of motion and gross lower extremity strength. He began ambulating with a unilateral axillary crutch and was independent with most functional mobility. His Lower Extremity Functional Scale score improved five points. Discussion: Physical therapy interventions were shown to be beneficial in improving this patient’s functional limitations. With prior supporting evidence lacking, this case report introduces clinicians to specific interventions that were implemented to improve functional limitations secondary to a femur fracture. Further research is needed 65 for this diagnosis in the young adult population.


The case report poster for this paper can be found here:




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