A prospective 5-year study was carried out of 143 patients with trochanteric fractures treated by Ender nailing. A detailed proforma was used for multifactorial analysis in order to identify the prognostic indicators of social function and quality of life of the patients. Their mean age was 81 years and the female: male ratio 7:1. The mortality rate 6 months after injury was 23%, and at the end of 5 years 45.5%. The patients surviving the first 6 months had the same life expectancy as the general population. Dementia, associated disease, medical complications, total dependency and age were the most significant predictors of mortality. These factors, with pressure sores and poor rehabilitation, were also significant in determining the prognosis of social function. Deterioration of health status was seen in 36% during the first 6 months after injury and 40% showed deterioration of their social condition within this period. Later, most survivors recovered and were restored to their previous state. Postoperative geriatric care is essential to achieve this aim.