Hip Fractures

Overview:  The hip joint is a ball and socket joint made up of the top of your femur (ball) and the bottom of the pelvis (socket).   A hip fracture occurs when any part of the structure breaks and the bones separate.  Causes for hip fractures include:  A fall, a direct blow (Auto Accident for example) to the side of the hip, medical conditions such as osteoporosis, cancer, or repetitive stress.  


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Signs and Symptoms:

- Pain in your hip or groin and can even give pain in the thigh.

- Trouble walking on the affected side.

- Pain when you rotate your hip in or out.

- The affected leg may appear to be rotated instead of straight.


Fractures of the hip should be assessed by and orthopaedic specialist immediately.

Non-Operative management (rarely recommended) consists of:

- Early ambulation if deemed appropriate by the doctor, with the assistance of a walker or crutches.

- Physical therapy for safety training and strengthening.

- Office follow up to monitor healing with X-rays.

- Collaboration with your primary care physician to evaluate bone density via bone scan or metabolic blood tests.

- Lifelong treatment of the osteopenia or osteoporosis to prevent further fractures.

Operative treatment:

If the broken pieces of the bone are separated surgery may be necessary to restore the hip joint making it possible to walk.  There are many different types of surgical fixation for hip fractures.  Depending on the X-rays results and type of fracture present, will dictate what type of surgery is necessary.  Some hip fractures are even treated with a partial or total hip replacement.  Shown below are a few examples of how hip fractures are treated.