Gutierrez L, Roskell N, Castellsague J, Beard S, Rycroft C, Abeysinghe S, Shannon P, Robbins S, Gitlin M. Study of the incremental cost and clinical burden of hip fractures in postmenopausal women in the United Kingdom. J Med Econ. 2011 Jan 1;14(1):99-107.

OBJECTIVE: To determine the incremental cost of healthcare and clinical outcomes in the 12 months following incident hip fractures among postmenopausal women in the UK.

METHODS: Retrospective cohort study of women aged 50 years or older hospitalized for an incident hip fracture within 1 week of the fracture date who were age- and comorbidity-matched to women without fracture. Cohorts were identified in the Health Improvement Network database, and followed up for 1 year.

RESULTS: Among 2,427 women who had a hip fracture and a recorded hospitalization, the mean [SD] age was 81 [9.3] years. About 18% of women without fractures were hospitalized during follow-up and 18% of women with hip fractures and 4% of women without fractures had at least one emergency admission (RR, 4.7; 95% CI, 3.8-5.8). There were no major differences in use of general practitioner visit, referral visits, or in prescription of medications. Mortality was 18% in the hip fracture cohort and 7% in the non-fracture cohort (RR, 2.5; 95% CI, 2.1-3.0). The overall 1-year mean incremental cost of hip fractures was £4,222 (95% CI, £4,105-4,339); most of this cost (97%) was for hospitalizations, with an increment of £4,095. About 98% of the incremental cost occurred in the first 6 months following hip fracture.

CONCLUSIONS: The results of this study indicate that the cost and clinical burden associated with hip fractures in postmenopausal women in the UK are considerable. The incremental cost is mostly related to the cost of hospitalization and treatment of the hip fracture. Key limitations were the inclusion of only those women with a recorded hospitalization, and that costs associated with rehabilitation services, social services, and long-term care were not recorded in this study, although these are important contributors to the total cost of fractures.

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