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The assessment of vertebral fractures in elderly women with recent hip fractures: the BREAK Study

By Gonnelli S, Caffarelli C, Maggi S, Rossi S, Siviero P, Gandolini G, Cisari C, Rossini M, Iolascon G, Letizia Mauro G, Crepaldi G and Nuti R


This study aimed to evaluate the prevalence of vertebral fractures in elderly women with a recent hip fracture. The burden of vertebral fractures expressed by the Spinal Deformity Index (SDI) is more strictly associated with the trochanteric than the cervical localization of hip fracture and may influence short-term functional outcomes. INTRODUCTION: This study aimed to determine the prevalence and severity of vertebral fractures in elderly women with recent hip fracture and to assess whether the burden of vertebral fractures may be differently associated with trochanteric hip fractures with respect to cervical hip fractures. METHODS: We studied 689 Italian women aged 60 years or over with a recent low trauma hip fracture and for whom an adequate X-ray evaluation of spine was available. All radiographs were examined centrally for the presence of any vertebral deformities and radiological morphometry was performed. The SDI, which integrates both the number and the severity of fractures, was also calculated. RESULTS: Prevalent vertebral fractures were present in 55.7 % of subjects and 95 women (13.7 %) had at least one severe fracture. The women with trochanteric hip fracture showed higher SDI and higher prevalence of diabetes with respect to those with cervical hip fracture, p = 0.017 and p = 0.001, respectively. SDI, surgical menopause, family history of fragility fracture, and type2 diabetes mellitus were independently associated with the risk of trochanteric hip fracture. Moreover, a higher SDI was associated with a higher percentage of post-surgery complications (p = 0.05) and slower recovery (p < 0.05). CONCLUSIONS: Our study suggests that the burden of prevalent vertebral fractures is more strictly associated with the trochanteric than the cervical localisation of hip fracture and that elevated values of SDI negatively influence short term functional outcomes in women with hip fracture

Publisher: 'Springer Science and Business Media LLC'
Year: 2012
DOI identifier: 10.1007/s00198-012-2119-2
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