Fractures are warning signs for an ‘osteoporotic career’ as depicted in the graph to the right. These sequential bone breaks will be all too familiar to sufferers and their families.
This might have been a wrist fracture during their fifties whilst at work, a humerus fracture during their sixties on the day they retired, or a fracture of the spine when picking up a grandchild at their 70th birthday celebration.
These fractures have been called ‘signal fractures’, for obvious reasons, and if left undiagnosed & untreated, these patients are twice as likely to break another bone in the future. In fact, we have known since the 1980s that half of patients presenting with hip fractures today have experienced prior fragility fractures in the past.
The result of this phenomenon is that a significant minority of older people become ‘trapped’ in the fragility fracture cycle illustrated below.
The Capture the Fracture Campaign seeks to change this cycle and ensure that every patient presenting with a ‘signal fracture’ to urgent care services throughout the world receives the secondary preventive care they need.