Hoarding Woes: The Elderly & Hip Fractures

We pretty much know, especially if we have older family members, that a fall and resultant hip fracture is a bad thing. It can lead to a downward spiral of events. Delays can make things worse as well.

“Although surgeries to repair fractures are straightforward and relatively simple fixes, complications after surgery can be dangerous. Mortality rates in the year following a hip fracture are about 25 percent. Complications include blood clots, infection, and pneumonia. With a partial hip replacement, the patient can also dislocate the prosthesis before it stabilizes. If an individual has fragile bones, the hip nail or screw may pull out of the bone. Post-surgery complications more often lead to death if a patient already suffers from another serious medical condition.” 

“Hip fractures in the elderly are common—for every 10 hip fractures, about nine occur in people over the age of 60. “Hip fractures double with every five-year increase in age [after age 50],” says Sandy B. Ganz, PT, DSc, GCS, the director of rehabilitation at Amsterdam Nursing Home in New York City. By 90 years of age, one in four women and one in eight men will have fractured a hip, according to a study done by the Center for Disease Control and Prevention.

Hip fractures in the elderly are critical ailments, with possible life-endangering complications. Surgeries to fix breaks are common and consistently effective, while healing can take an entire year.” [source]

Not sure I like that ‘elderly’ word being linked with ‘over 60’ though! In my work place Worker’s Comp claims are frequently through trips & falls. Great care is taken to reduce on the job injuries, given the huge costs. So, in the hoarding enviro we deal with, when our loved one is in it, look at the probabilities given hoarding, dementia, poor health and the never ending possibilities for trip points. This alone and the consequences of a broken hip should make one act. Fire dangers yes. Malnourished yes. Pneumonia yes. But trips and falls probably more common than we realize.

Did I mention that follow up xrays revealed my aunt has blood clots in her left leg? 


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