Charlotte’s Blog

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It’s Never to Late for Hip

We’ve had a nice trend over the recent years, a trend in which hip fractures in America had been declining.  Alas, I said “had been”.  According to an international study staffed, in part, by researchers at the Harvard Medical School, we are expected to see the rate of hip fractures reverse what had been a downward trend to what is forecast to nearly double from hip fractures 2018 levels to what they are forecast to be in 2050.

And it’s even more pronounced among men.  This latter part was a bit of a surprise to me as we have always associated hip fractures with osteoporosis which has been the domain of post-menopausal women. This was an international study, so we can even point to Brazil as the country you would have wanted to be born in to “lower” your risk of hip fractures versus Denmark, the high mark.  Hip fracture rates are more than three times as high in Denmark than in Brazil.  Post hip fracture treatment was lowest in Germany, but almost five times higher in United Kingdom.  Talk about adding insult to injury, fracture rates are on the rise and post-fracture care is going down.

The analysts point to men’s overall lower treatment with medications for osteoporosis than women to explain some of the gender difference.  But my opinion is that the trend down can be explained also by longer life spans in general as well as poorer dietary habits, fitness habits and obesity in a lot of countries.  Calcium intake is important for healthy bones, but so is exercise, particularly the exercise employing work on the load bearing legs like walking or running.  Remember sitting is the new smoking.

As you consider your options, I encourage you to consider being a leader in “living well.”  At your next social gathering when others chime in with all their latest ailments or other medical complaints, try this.  Mention that you have taken up daily walking, mention how far and mention how you’re sleeping better and that you may even have dropped a little weight.  Ask the group who among them would be your walking buddy, because it’s better for both you and a walking or running buddy.  Be radical and start a new trend in your social circle.

Be radical and be hip!

Charlotte Bishop is an Aging Life Care Advisor, Geriatric Care Manager and founder of, certified professionals who are geriatric advocates, resources, counselors and friends to older adults and their families in metropolitan Chicago.  She also is the co-author of How Do I Know You? A Caregiver’s Lifesaver for Dealing with Dementia.


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