Hip Fracture

Definition

A hip fracture is a break in the thigh bone just below the hip joint. The hip joint consists of a ball at the top of the thigh bone and a rounded socket in the pelvis. Most hip fractures occur 1-2 inches below the ball portion of the hip.
Hip Fracture
Nucleus factsheet image
Copyright © Nucleus Medical Media, Inc.

Causes

A hip fracture is caused by a trauma to the bone. Fractures in young people with healthy bones are cause by major trauma. Fractures in older adults or people with conditions that lead to weakened bones may be caused by minor trauma.

Risk Factors

Factors that increase the risk of fracture in people with healthy bones include:
  • Motor vehicle accidents and other types of major trauma
  • Sporting activity that places excess stress on the hip—can lead to stress fractures (rare)
Women are more likely than men to fracture their hips, especially after menopause. It is more common in older adults. Other factors that increase the risk of hip fractures include:
  • Previous hip fracture or history of falling
  • Family history of fractures later in life
  • Small-boned, slender body—low body weight
Factors that can weaken bone and increase the risk of fractures include:
  • Osteoporosis —a bone-thinning condition that weakens all bones
  • Poor nutrition
  • Deficient intake or absorption of calcium and vitamin D
  • Physical inactivity
  • Smoking
  • Kidney disease
  • Cortisone or other steroids
  • Thyroid disorder
  • Low testosterone in men
  • Bone conditions such as osteomalacia—rare
  • Bone tumors—rare
Factors that increase the risk of falls that can lead to fractures include:
  • Weakness
  • Poor balance and coordination
  • Excessive alcohol use
  • Irregular heart beat or low blood pressure
  • Chronic disease or fragile health
  • Diabetes
  • Arthritis
  • Parkinson disease
  • History of stroke
  • Problems with vision
  • Heart failure
  • Mental impairments including Alzheimer disease
  • Certain medications which cause lightheadedness, drowsiness, or weakness

leave comments
0
Did you like this? Share with your family and friends.
Related Topics:
Current Research From Top Journals


Early Peanut Consumption Associated with Lower Risk of Peanut Allergy in High Risk Children
March 2015

Many medical groups felt that early exposure to certain foods like peanuts increased a child's risk of developing food allergies. However, newer research including this trial suggest that early exposure may actually decrease the risk of developing food allergies.

dot separator
previous editions

Breastfeeding May Decrease the Risk of Childhood Obesity
February 2015

Tonsillectomy May Reduce Number of Sore Throat Days in Children
February 2015

Research Review Finds Little Support for Nearly Half of Medical Talk Show Recommendations
January 2015

dashed separator

Advertisement

Our Free Newsletter
click here to see all of our uplifting newsletters »

 

Advertisement

Advertisement

DiggDeliciousNewsvineRedditStumbleTechnoratiFacebook