Knowing “bone fracture risk in elderly people” in advance





The team of Prof. Dongwook Shin of Department of Family Medicine in Samsung Medical Center and the team of Prof. Su-Min Jeong in Seoul National University Boramae Medical Center jointly studied on about 1.07 million elderly patients (66 years old) who received life turning point health checkups between 2009 and 2015 and presented the results in the recent issue of Bone, a renowned international academic journal.


Based on “Timed up and go test,” the research team followed up the subjects who received the health checkups for the average of 4.5 years to see whether the test results were relevant with bone fracture occurrences. The time taken for an examinee standing from the sitting position, walking for 3 meters, coming back, and sitting again at the original spot was measured. The test was used to make a comprehensive judgment on leg strength, walking speed, sense of balance, etc., and less than 10 seconds indicated a normal test result.


According to the research team, the group of subjects whose results were 10 seconds had 8% higher in the bone fracture possibility than the control group, and the group of people whose results were greater than 20 seconds had 20% or higher in the bone fracture possibility than the control group. For hip fractures, they increased by 19% for 10 seconds and 96% (i.e. almost twice) for 20 seconds. For spine fractures, they increased by 13% for 10 seconds and 32% for 20 seconds, showing clear differences.


 *One out of five patients who had hip fractures died within one year from the fractures, and there were high chances of having sequela. Since a spine fracture causes severe pain and spine deformity, it destroys the life of an elderly person.