Warning over rise in hip fractures in the wake of Covid because of post-pandemic ‘deconditioning’ – as Hollywood icon Sophia Loren, 89, recovers from fall at her Swiss home
- Some 72,000 hip fractures were logged in 2022, up on 66,000 in 2020 and 2021
- The cost of treating the extra fractures is predicted at £75m health officials said
- Sophia Loren underwent emergency surgery on her hip after a fall yesterday
Hip fractures have spiked in the wake of Covid — and experts believe the pandemic and lockdowns are to blame.
A record 72,000 occurred in Britain during 2022, which is roughly 10 per cent higher than levels seen in the first two years of the virus crisis.
This is despite a fall in the size of the ‘at risk’ elderly population due to the pandemic itself, physicians said.
They claimed the statistics offered an ‘early indication’ of the real-life effects of ‘physical deconditioning’ — changes in the body caused by physical inactivity and disuse — seen during the pandemic.
It comes after Oscar-winning actress Sophia Loren yesterday also underwent emergency surgery to treat several ‘serious fractures’ to different parts of her hip following a fall in her Swiss home.
A record 72,000 occurred in Britain during 2022, which is roughly 10 per cent higher than levels seen in the first two years of the virus crisis. Monthly statistics released by the college (pictured) show figures logged in 2018 and 2019 reflect the number reported in 2020 and 2021
Oscar-winning actress Sophia Loren’s agent confirmed yesterday she had undergone emergency surgery following a fall in her Swiss home. The 89-year-old fell in her bathroom and sustained several ‘serious fractures’ to different parts of her hip, including her femur, which needed ‘urgent surgery’, her agent Andrea Giusti told the PA news agency
News about Ms Loren’s condition was shared by the team at her self-titled restaurant chain, who shared the news on their Instagram page
The 2023 National Hip Fracture Database report found 72,160 were recorded in 2022.
But in what the report termed its ‘most dramatic observation’, over 7,000 people had suffered a fracture in December 2022 alone.
This is far higher than the average of 5,500 per month in recent years.
Published by the Royal College of Physicians, it said: ‘These additional hip fractures happened despite a fall in the size of the ‘at risk’ older population over the preceding three years, as a result of Covid-related mortality among older people and those living in care homes.’
It noted a slight increase in the proportion of hip fractures occurring in under-80s.
Read more: Sophia Loren, 89, is recovering from emergency surgery after sustaining several ‘serious fractures’ following a fall at her home in Geneva
The report added: ‘This is perhaps an early indication of Public Health England’s (PHE) [now the UK Health Security Agency] predictions that physical deconditioning and increased risk of falling due to the pandemic may lead to an increase in the number of people who are at risk of fragility fracture.’
Monthly statistics released by the college show figures logged in 2018 and 2019 reflect the number reported in 2020 and 2021.
But officials also warned the figures suggests the cost of inpatient care for these extra fractures will have added £75million to the annual cost of hip fractures.
Long waits for assessments, delays to surgery and lengthy hospital stays which could lead to further physical deconditioning may also raise this figure, they said.
In comparison, however, the health service spends around £170billion on average annually.
Most older people in Britain who break their hip do so during a low-energy trauma, like a fall from standing height, rather than in a car crash or similar accident.
It comes after Loren’s agent confirmed yesterday she had undergone emergency surgery following a fall.
The 89-year-old fell in her bathroom and sustained several ‘serious fractures’ to different parts of her hip, including her femur, which needed ‘urgent surgery’, her agent Andrea Giusti told the PA news agency.
In a statement also released on the Instagram page of her self-titled restaurant, her team wrote: ‘A fall at her home in Geneva today caused Ms Loren hip fractures.
‘Operated with a positive outcome, she will now have to observe a short period of recovery and follow a road to rehabilitation.
‘Thankfully everything worked out for the best and the Lady will be back with us very soon. The whole team at Sophia Loren Restaurant takes this opportunity to wish her a speedy recovery.’
In 2021, PHE predicted that ‘without mitigation’ up to 110,000 more older people — an increase of 3.9 per cent — were projected to have ‘at least one fall per year as a result of reduced strength and balance activity during the pandemic’.
Writing in its report the ‘Wider Impacts of COVID-19 on Physical Activity, Deconditioning and Falls in Older Adults’, officials also said the total number of falls could increase by 124,000 for males — an increase of 6.3 per cent — and 130,000 for females, up 4.4 per cent.
It added: ‘For each year that the lower levels of strength and balance activity observed during the pandemic persist, there is projected to be an additional cost to the health and social care system as a result of the change in predicted related falls of £211m (incurred over a two and half year period).’
Source: Read Full Article