Hip fracture (broken bone)

Arms | Orthopaedics | Hip fracture (broken bone) (Disease)


A hip fracture is a serious injury, particularly if the person injured is old, and complications can be life-threatening. Most hip fractures occur in people older than 65.

Causes and Risk factors

Hip fractures in the elderly are most often caused by a fall, usually a seemingly insignificant fall. In younger patients with stronger bones, more common causes of a broken hip include high-energy injuries such as car accidents. Hip fractures can also be caused by bone weakened from tumor or infection, a problem called a pathologic fracture.

A broken hip in the elderly can be explained primarily by weak bones and osteoporosis. Elderly patients with osteoporosis are at much higher risk of developing a hip fracture than someone without osteoporosis. Other risk factors associated with hip fracture are female sex, Caucasian race, slightly built individuals, and limited physical activity.

Diagnosis and Treatment

The doctor can determine that you have a hip fracture based on your symptoms and by observing the abnormal position of your hip and leg. An X-ray usually will confirm that you have a fracture and show exactly where the fracture is on your bone.

If your X-ray doesnt show a fracture but you still have hip pain, your doctor may order a CT or an MRI scan to look for a small hairline fracture.

Treatment for hip fracture often involves a combination of surgery, rehabilitation and medication. ...

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