Monday, October 20, 2008

High fracture risk seen in heart failure patients

From the CBC News:
People with heart failure have an elevated risk for bone fractures, particularly a broken hip, and doctors should be on the lookout in these patients for signs of osteoporosis, Canadian researchers said Monday.

Among 16,294 patients with heart disease in Alberta, those treated for heart failure were four times as likely to have a fracture in the next year as those with other types of heart disease, the researchers report in the journal Circulation.

The heart failure patients were six times as likely as the others to sustain a hip fracture, the researchers added.

It was the first study to indicate heart failure patients are at greater risk for bone-weakening osteoporosis, said Dr. Justin Ezekowitz, director of the Heart Function Clinic at the University of Alberta in Edmonton, who helped lead the research.

"This intersection is important because orthopedic fracture, especially hip fracture, is very debilitating. On top of a very debilitating disease such as heart failure, this is a very big problem," Ezekowitz said in a telephone interview. ...more

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