Risk Factor of a Hip Fracture
Risk for a hip fracture increases substantially with age. Bone density and muscle mass decrease as we get older. Post-menopausal women are at an even greater risk of a hip fracture, as the drop in estrogen production makes them more likely to develop osteoporosis. Eating a diet that is insufficient in dietary calcium and Vitamin D also contribute to a greater risk of hip fracture.
Other risk factors include family history and bone structure; those with slender builds, such as those of Asian heritage, have an increased likelihood of hip fracture.
As we age, reflexes and balance suffer, as well as vision – creating a dangerous situation. By the time we are 65 years old, most Americans are on some type of Medication that they will be on for the rest of their lives. Many medications for common diseases like hypertension and diabetes also cause dizziness and weakness. Those side effects, coupled with a natural decline in reflexes as we age, cause an increased number of falls among the elderly population.
Symptoms of a hip fracture may include an inability to move immediately following a fall, coupled with a severe pain in your hip or groin that occurs on the affected side when one attempts to put pressure on the leg. There may also be significant bruising or swelling.
Complications of a hip fracture are often severe and life-changing. It may disallow adults living independently pre-injury to continue to do so. In fact, many patients that are placed as temporary residents in a nursing home for recovery are still there a year later. A hip fracture largely limits mobility, causing a high probability of serious complications such as blood clots and bedsores, as well as a greater risk of a second hip fracture.
Many things can be done to prevent or decrease the chance of a hip fracture. It is important to maintain strength and flexibility. “Prehab” is an excellent way to stay in shape avoid being at high risk for injury.