Women who have fractures experience a significant reduction in health-related quality of life similar to or worse than that experienced by patients with chronic illnesses such as diabetes, arthritis or lung disease, according to new findings from the Global Longitudinal Study of Osteoporosis in Women (GLOW).
The University of Alabama at Birmingham is part of GLOW, an international study of over 60,000 women. Approximately 40 percent of women over the age of 50 will suffer a fracture; the most common sites are at the hip, spine or wrist. These fractures often carry with them chronic pain, reduced mobility, loss of independence and, especially in the case of hip fracture, increased risk of death. Because the likelihood of fractures increases substantially with older age, fracture numbers are projected to rise as the population ages.
The findings were published online July 15, 2010, in the Mayo Clinic Proceedings.