Northwestern University logoInstances of wrist fracture may be commonly observed especially in older people. Sometimes a surgery is recommended for patients with this fracture. A latest study led by the Northwestern University apparently declares that wrist fractures have a vital personal and public health impact and play a role in the development of disability in older people. The findings highlight the lasting impact wrist fractures on older women.

Daily chores such as carrying heavy objects, opening doors, cutting food, pouring liquid, turning the key and getting out of a chair appear to be hampered due to wrist fracture. The exact impact on the capacity to undertake everyday tasks does not seem to be well understood yet. The investigators intended to evaluate the clinical impact of wrist fractures in a group of older women. 6,107 healthy women, aged 65 years and older with no wrist or hip fracture were monitored by the experts.

Reductions in performing five daily activities namely meal preparation, heavy housekeeping, ability to climb 10 stairs, shopping and getting out of a car were examined. For almost every two years on an average of 7.6 years, the participants’ ability to perform the five tasks was observed. In the study period itself, 268 women suffered a wrist fracture.

Beatrice Edwards, M.D., associate professor of geriatrics at Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine, the director of the bone health and osteoporosis program at Northwestern and lead author of the study remarked, “Our findings highlight the personal, public health and policy implications of wrist fractures.”

While analyzing the results factors like demographic, health and lifestyle were taken into consideration. It was then suggested that women with fracture face an elevated risk of almost 50 percent in functional decline as compared to women without a fracture. The scientists reveal that functional decline due to wrist fracture is equivalent to other risks like falls, diabetes and arthritis.

The study findings not only call for awareness about the impact of wrist fractures, but also necessitate the requirement of measures such as bone density screening and treatment of women with osteoporosis, to avoid wrist fractures. The scientists also suggest that care and attention can fasten wrist fracture recovery.

The study is published by the British Medical Journal.