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GAZZETTA MEDICA ITALIANA ARCHIVIO PER LE SCIENZE MEDICHE

A Journal on Internal Medicine and Pharmacology


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Gazzetta Medica Italiana Archivio per le Scienze Mediche 2010 October;169(5):173-9

language: English

Hip fracture among older adults: epidemiology and outcomes

Ronchetto F., Lissolo S., Ruscino S., Martinelli E.

SCDO Geriatria e Lungodegenza, ASL TO4 Ospedali di Cuorgnè e Castellamonte, Italia


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Aim. Hip fracture consequent to fall is a growing health problem throughout the world. Among older people, it causes substantial morbidity, mortality and use of health care services. The aim of this paper is to show and discuss epidemiology and major adverse outcomes of hip fractures.
Methods. Analysis of data of a number of epidemiological and clinical studies published from 1972 to 2009 concerning early and long-term mortality and morbidity related to hip fracture.
Results. In-hospital mortality range from 2.7% to 14.3%. Long-term mortality rates show considerable variations, from 5.2% to 28% at 6 months and from 11.8% to 33% at 1 year, depending upon the specific population studied. Among surviving patient 20% have permanent disability, 25% became totally dependent and up 50% partially dependent. The recovery in functions is a slow process and the regain of ambulation and ability to perform the activities of daily living (ADLs) requires even 1 year after fracture.
Conclusion. In this scenario, the prevention of falls takes on a crucial importance. However, even if preventive strategies and guidelines for reducing falls have been identified, and many therapies with proven efficacy for reducing risk of fracture (i.e., antiosteoporotic drugs) are available, medical assessment and provision for appropriate interventions seem to be out of a systematic attention by the clinicians.

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