A Hip Fracture over age 70 is Very Bad. About 20% of women and over 30% of men die from their hip fracture. Some consider these to be the lucky ones. Nearly half of those who survive a hip fracture spend the rest of their lives in a nursing home.
Many hip fractures should be preventable. There were warnings! Half of the people who break a hip had another Fragility Fracture a few months or years before. Most warnings go unheeded. Hip Fractures that could have been prevented destroy quality of life for too many individuals.
Recovering from a hip fracture takes months. Most require surgery with several days in hospital. Many require weeks in Skilled Care or Rehab. Home Alone is often impossible. Bathing or even bathroom is tough with a walker. Stairs are impossible for weeks, or months, or forever.
The pain, weakness, and balance issues of a hip fracture never fully resolve. Full recovery of what function you can achieve takes 6 to 12 months.
Many who were Independent Community Ambulators become confined to home and short distances when out of their home. Many who could manage at home now need Assisted Living. Many who managed in Assisted Living wind up in a Nursing Home – often permanently.
It doesn’t have to be this way. Kaiser Southern California started screening for clinical osteoporosis and fracture risk ten years ago. They started preventive care including Calcium, Vitamin D3, Protein, and osteoporosis medications when needed. They have probably prevented over 10,000 hip fractures in their members.
Avoid hip fractures. Get a Complete Bone Health Evaluation and treat any issues you find. Take control of your bone health and prevent your bones from fracturing.
Jay Ginther, MD