Prevalence of Hip Fracture Hospitalizations Declines
The prevalence of hospitalizations for osteoporotic (non-traumatic) hip fractures in the U.S. declined significantly from 1988 to 2005, despite an increase in all-cause hospitalizations over the same period and a general ageing of the population, according to research presented at the Annual Congress of the European League Against Rheumatism.
Over the period in question, (1988-2005), a rapid growth in the elderly U.S. population has occurred and epidemiologists and economists had predicted that the prevalence of osteoporotic hip fractures would also escalate. The total number of all-cause hospitalizations in the 50+ age group increased from 16.2 million in 1988 to 20 million in 2005, whereas the prevalence of non-traumatic hip fracture hospitalizations in this population decreased from 428 per 100,000 population to 328 per 100,000 in 2005, a decline of 25%.
Of all of the common osteoporotic fractures, hip fractures are generally associated with the highest morbidity, mortality and burden on healthcare resources, given that patients may require multidisciplinary care, long periods of convalescence and long-term social care following discharge from hospital.
Ms Amrita Sehgal, a 17-year old student at Menlo-Atherton High School, Woodside, USA, who led the study, said of the results: "It is very interesting that the prevalence of hip fracture hospitalizations decreased so dramatically during this period. This decrease is likely due to a combination of improved awareness, screening, early diagnosis and treatment. Hopefully we will be able to build upon such advances to further decrease this rate, improve patient prognosis and reduce the impact of osteoporosis overall."
This article was adapted from a press release issued by EULAR.