Fracture recovery

EXTRA INFORMATION

Improving fall-related hip fracture treatment

WHAT WE KNOW

The risk factors for suffering a broken hip are numerous, including:

  • Osteoporosis, which causes bones to become weaker, making them more susceptible to fracture.
  • Gender: Women lose bone density more quickly than men due to a decrease in oestrogen levels after menopause begins.
  • Nutrition: Poor nutrition in childhood increases hip-fracture risk. Eating disorders such as anorexia nervosa and bulimia damage bones.
  • Tobacco and alcohol use: Smoking and drinking too much can lead to bone loss.
  • Medications: Taking four or more medications at a time or taking any psychoactive medications are risk factors for falling.
  • Home environment: Throw rugs and electrical wires are tripping hazards, as are a lack of stair railings and grab bars, unstable furniture, and poor lighting.

 

About Our Research

Hip fracture care is a particular area of interest at NeuRA. Recently we highlighted the current and future costs of hip fracture care. A separate study looked at some of the aspects of quality of care and have shown that across New South Wales there is significant variation in the time older people have to wait for their hip fracture surgery with the conclusion that more could be done to expedite care.

Other research in the same area has demonstrated that a particular approach to caring for hip fracture patients is associated with a lower 30-day mortality rate. When orthopaedic surgeons and geriatricans look after a hip fracture patient together, the outcomes seem to be better for older people. This approach to care is now being recommended across Australia.

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