Why is a Hip Fracture So Dangerous?
Out of all the different bone injuries, hip fractures are one of the most serious. A patient who has been diagnosed with a hip fracture needs specialized medical care and hospitalization. But why are hip fractures so dangerous and sometimes even deadly?
Hip fractures immobilize the patient, often leaving them bedridden for weeks or months if the fracture is severe. This immobilization can cause a sharply increased risk of blood clots. If the patient doesn’t receive adequate care, then a blood clot could form and cause a pulmonary embolism, a stroke, or another cardiovascular event.
Other Complications Caused by Hip Fractures
Other than a higher risk of blood clots, hip fractures can cause:
- Decreased bone density: The more a bone breaks, the more difficult it becomes to heal the next time, which causes a drop in bone density in that area. However, studies have shown that a single broken bone, especially a large bone like the hip, can contribute to a decrease in overall bone density. People with low bone density can have various health issues and will be at risk of suffering severe injuries if they fall.
- Post-surgery infections: All surgeries carry a risk of infection. This risk increases with significant or major surgeries. If hip surgery can’t be completed with minimally invasive techniques, then the patient might suffer a serious infection after.
- Recovery complications: Seniors with hip fractures have been known to suffer a range of complications while recovering from intense hip surgery, including worsened diabetes symptoms, intestinal distress, nutrient deficiency, and heart attacks.
Undiagnosed Hip Fracture Symptoms
Minor hip fractures or hairline hip fractures might not be immediately apparent when they happen. It is not unusual for some patients to have a broken hip and not realize it at first. Unfortunately, an undiagnosed and untreated hip fracture can cause worsened complications and a higher risk of blood clots.
Signs of an undiagnosed hip fracture usually include:
- Constant dull ache in hips, abdomen, or upper legs
- Sharp, irregular pain in the hips
- Bruising or swelling in the hips or upper legs
- Inability to move or rotate one or both legs
- Inability to put weight on one or both legs
- Leg is positioned strangely on its own
- Slightly tilted standing position toward one side
- Pain after walking even a short distance
If you are showing signs of a hip fracture after a traumatic incident such as a fall but have not yet been diagnosed, you should see a medical professional as soon as possible. Hip fractures can cause blood clots and other complications, so it is recommended that you go to an urgent care facility.
Expensive Costs of Hip Fractures
Treating a fractured hip can be a long process that requires many different forms of medical treatments and care. It is not unusual for the costs of a hip fracture to be significant and continually accrue as time passes.
Hip Fracture Lawsuits
Anyone who has suffered a hip fracture in an accident should consider their legal options to seek compensation. If the accident was caused by another party’s negligence, then that party could be liable for all the harm suffered by the injured party, including medical expenses, lost wages, and pain and suffering. A personal injury claim will be necessary to explore legal options and take action.
Casper, Meadows, Schwartz & Cook in the Bay Area helps hip fracture patients seek compensation through injury claims. If you suffered a hip fracture in an accident that someone else caused, call (925) 275-5592 at any time to speak with one of our attorneys.