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Hip Fracture Prevention in the Elderly

A hip fracture is one of the more common ailments that can happen to elderly individuals.

Young nurse assisting a senior citizen onto his walkerHip fractures occur in over 1 out of 10 elderly New York City individuals, and it is important to practice safe prevention and treatment methods. At Alvita Care, we want to help your loved one prevent a hip fracture, and our dedicated team of home caregivers can assist with treatment in the event of an accident.

Many elderly individuals are at high fall risk levels, and a fracture is extremely possible when this occurs. This mainly occurs as vision decreases. There is a lack of coordination and balance, and weakness sets in.

Additionally, there are numerous amounts of risk factors that can put elderly individuals at risk of having a hip fracture. Hopefully, this will help you monitor these risk factors and help your loved ones avoid a hip fracture.

Osteoporosis is one of the first risk factors that can lead to a hip fracture.

This occurs when the disease causes weakness in the bones, and over 5 million individuals suffer from osteoporosis. Decreasing weight-bearing activities can lead to a safer environment to decrease hip fractures. Additionally, women lose bone density quickly and are more at risk of developing osteoporosis over time. This is due to women’s hormones and a decreased estrogen level. Along with gender, heredity can also lead to an increase in hip fractures. Those that are slender, small-boned, Caucasian, and Asian have an increased chance of having a hip fracture and suffering osteoporosis as well.

Poor nutrition and lifestyle habits can also increase your chances of fracturing your hip.

Specifically, eating disorders such as anorexia and bulimia and excess use of smoking and drinking can increase the speed that bone density is lost. Maintaining a healthy lifestyle can affect so many different areas of one’s life, and it is imperative that one does not engage in any harmful lifestyle habits.

Finally, we recommend ensuring that the home environment is safe to guarantee a fall may not happen. Remove any throw rugs and electrical wires and ensure adequate lighting within one’s home. Furthermore, encourage your loved one to use any stair railings or grab bars in the stairwell or bathroom to help with one’s balance. If your loved one has a previous medical condition such as diabetes, Parkinson’s, depression, multiple sclerosis, dementia, or depression, keep an eye on them and help prevent falls from happening.

There are a few signs and symptoms that can help give a clue if your loved one may have fractured or broken their hip. Being unable to stand, severe pain in the hip or groin area, being unable to walk, stiffness, contusion, and inflammation. If your loved one is experiencing any of these symptoms call your doctor right away or a local hospital to receive assistance.

Typically, hip fractures need to be treated immediately, and surgery will need to be performed immediately to correct any issues regarding the fracture.

Once the surgery is performed, rest, recovery, and therapy are extremely important. Without proper treatment, mortality rates resulting in a hip fracture increase exponentially. Additionally, there can be complications such as infection, blood clots, and pneumonia. Patients need to ensure that the replacement is not dislocated, and in some cases, the nail or screw in the hip can be dislocated, leading to complications further down the line. We suggest patients look into rehab centers and physical and occupational therapists to help make recovery simpler. For help with this, please give us a call at 212-273-0490, and we are here to work with you and your home care plan.

Finally, by abiding by a few simple suggestions such as wearing sensible shoes, wearing hip padding, increasing exercise, going to the doctor and eye doctor regularly, and simply taking time to heal will all help with recovery. Fall prevention and treatment after a hip fracture is the starting point towards full recovery.

For questions regarding symptoms of a hip fracture, how home care can be covered by insurance, and the required physical/occupational therapy, contact us at Alvita Care, but we also recommend you consult with your doctor or health care insurance company.

Additionally, we are here to help, and our trained geriatric care managers can help at any time. Please give us a call today at 212-273-0490, or you can call us toll-free at 1-800-414-7611.