The hip is one of the most powerful and most critical joints in the body. Therefore, a hip fracture is a very serious injury. Older people are at a much greater risk of developing a hip fracture due to their elevated risk of falling; the most common cause of hip fractures. A broken hip almost always requires replacement. The following signs can help patients readily identify the presence of a hip fracture and immediately seek medical attention to avoid further aggravating the injury and potentially causing much more serious complications.
Signs of a Hip Fracture
Although most hip fractures are caused by falls, there are multiple other factors that may cause a broken hip in people of all ages such as car accidents, weakened bones, and sports accidents. Signs of a broken hip may include inability to put weight on the leg that corresponds to the side of the hip that has become fractured, stiffness, bruising, swelling in the hip area, severe hip or groin pain, and the inability to move immediately following a fall. In other cases, one leg may be shorter than the other, or the leg on the fractured side of the hip may be turned outward. Anyone who experiences any of these symptoms should immediately visit our health practitioner.
Hip Fracture Risk Factors
There are several risk factors that elevate a person’s susceptibility to developing a hip fracture. Older people are more susceptible to falling due to reductions in vision, being disoriented as a result of taking medications, and a general reduction in balance. Seventy percent of hip fractures occur in women, who experience bone loss more frequently than most men due to a drop in estrogen as they age.
People who refrain from doing weight-bearing exercises such as walking may also suffer bone loss. Many people are also unaware that tobacco and alcohol use may interfere with the process of bone-building.