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Fragility Fractures

Fragility Fractures

A Fragility Fracture is any fracture that follows a low impact injury, typically, a fall from a standing height or less.

In healthy people, such falls should not cause any bone fractures. If this happens, irrespective caused the fall, one should wonder what made the bones fragile. The first fracture is a warning sign, and a very important one! One broken bone  is plenty, and all effort should me made to prevent a future, and potentially more serious, fracture.

The most common cause of fragility fractures is osteoporosis.  An earlier stage is called osteopenia. About 52 million Americans have osteoporosis or osteopenia. Of those, two million break a bone each year. This number is expected to double by 2040.

  • Osteoporosis has no signs or symptoms until a fracture occurs.
  • One half of all women and up to one quarter of all men will suffer a fragility fracture in their lifetime.
  • If you have had a previous fragility fracture, you are twice as likely to suffer a fracture in the future.
  • Over 2 million fragility fractures occur each year – more than heart attacks, stokes, and breast cancer combined. This number is on the rise and expected to double by 2040.
  • While a wrist fracture may not have the most severe impact on life, a spine fracture, or a hip fracture, may end the patient up in a nursing home for life. There is also 25% increased risk for mortality following a hip fracture.

For more information about fragility fractures, prevention, and treatment, please check the main fragility fracture webpage.


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