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Knee replacement surgery ups later hip fracture risk

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Hip fracture risk rises for patients during the 10 years after they have undergone total knee replacement, according to Swedish researchers.

The researchers from the Sahlgrenska Academy in Molndal analysed hip fracture risk before and after total knee replacement, based on data from 1987 to 2002 for the entire Swedish population.

Their findings were presented at the World Congress on Osteoporosis, Osteoarthritis and Musculoskeletal Diseases in Malaga in Spain and published in a supplement of the journal Osteoporosis International.

They were able to show that individuals with total knee replacement due to primary osteoarthritis had a low risk for hip and vertebral fracture in the decade before surgery.

However, after total knee replacement, the risk for hip fracture increased by 4% and the risk for vertebral fracture increased by 19% compared to the population without total knee replacement.

The study authors said: “Studies have shown that osteoarthritis is associated with higher bone mass, and, as well, there may be a decreased physical activity level due to pain.

“The increasing risk for hip and vertebral fracture in the 10 years after knee replacement may be explained by pain, increase of physical activity due to rehabilitation, and other biomechanical factors,” they said.

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