It is a case of how a trivial fall can trigger major fractures in elderly people. A 78-year-old woman patient from Palakkad, with a pre-existing heart problem, successfully underwent simultaneous operations for hip and thigh bone fractures in KG Hospital recently.

On the third day of her admission in KG Hospital she started walking and on the fifth day she was discharged. The patient is cheerful and doing well now.

According to Dr G.Bakthavathsalam, Chairman of KG Hospital, the patient had an accidental fall in her house. She complained of severe pain in her hip and thigh. Then she was brought to KG Hospital.

A medical team led by Dr A.Sakthivel, Chief Orthopaedic Surgeon of KG Hospital, examined the patient and found that she had suffered fractures in the hip and in the thigh bone. Further evaluation revealed that the patient already suffered rheumatoid heart disease due to mitral valve dysfunction.

Hence, she was presented to KG Hospital as a “crippled rheumatoid.” In such a health condition, performing surgeries on her might lead to health complications. Hence, the medical team decided to perform the operations, both for the hip and thigh bone fractures, simultaneously,

Dr Sakthivel says that keeping the health condition of the patient in mind all the care was taken to perform the operations in quick time. A modified hip prosthesis with long stem measuring 30 cm was implanted in her to address the twin problems at one go.

Preventive measures

Our Chairman Dr Bakthavathsalam says that bone would become brittle for those who have crossed 50 years of age. Especially, post-menopause women should undergo Bone Mineral Density (BMD) and Mammography tests to avert any future health complications.

“When the bone is gradually losing its normal density, such a health condition is called osteopenia. This could be prevented by taking right amount of calcium and Vitamin-D on the advice of doctors. Osteoporosis sets in when the bone density falls severely. It will create a situation in which even a minor fall will cause major fractures, both of which are avoidable,” Dr Bakthavathsalam said.

Dr Sakthivel quoting statistics says that 90 per cent of the people in India suffer from Vitamin D deficiency. Vitamin D is essential for absorption of calcium which is essential for retaining the bone strength. Therefore, it is advisable that the elderly people take good amount of dairy products, he says.

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