Institute for Aging Research finds modifiable hip fracture complications contribute to mortality

(Boston, Mass.)—Potentially modifiable post-fracture complications, including pneumonia and pressure ulcers, are associated with an increased risk of death among nursing home residents who have suffered a hip fracture, according to a new study conducted by scientists at the Institute for Aging Research at Hebrew SeniorLife.

“Prevention strategies to reduce pressure ulcers and pneumonia may help reduce mortality in this frail population,” says lead author Sarah D. Berry, M.D., M.P.H., a research fellow at the Institute and a staff geriatrician at Hebrew Rehabilitation Center.

Published online by the Journal of Gerontology: Medical Sciences, the study found that pneumonia and pressure ulcers, also called bed sores, contributed to a 70 percent increase in mortality within six months of a hip fracture among nursing home residents. Compared to other studies, says Dr. Berry, “we found an even greater prevalence of the post-fracture complications of pneumonia and pressure ulcer, which is likely a reflection of our frail, institutionalized population.”

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