Over 300,000 adults ages 65 and older are hospitalized for hip fractures every year in the U.S. but that number may be going down. A prospective study published recently in JAMA Internal Medicine found the incidence of hip fractures decreased more than four percent a year between 1970 and 2010. The study, which included more than 10,500 participants, looked at hip fracture incidence across multiple generations, and also at hip fracture risk factors.
The observed decrease in hip fractures coincided with a decrease in smoking and heavy drinking over the time period studied. The study authors suggest that healthier lifestyle choices—including better nutrition, more physical activity, and less smoking and heavy drinking—led to improved bone health and decreased fracture risk for more recent generations.
The chances of breaking a hip go up as you get older. According to this study, you are likely less at risk than your parents were, but keep up the healthy lifestyle choices to help avoid this debilitating injury.