People who have osteoporosis are especially vulnerable to getting a pelvic insufficiency fracture. It is a type of stress fracture that occurs when the pelvic bone is unable to withstand normal stress and pressure due to the bone’s weakened state.
Osteoporosis is defined as a loss of bone density wherein the bones lose their elasticity and strength. Let’s take a look at who might be susceptible to developing a pelvic insufficiency fracture and who you can talk to if you are looking for a bone specialist or an orthopedic doctor.
Am I at Risk of a Pelvic Insufficiency Fracture?
As seniors become more physically active, especially in their late 60s and beyond, they are at a higher risk of acquiring a pelvic insufficiency fracture more than prior generations were. The average age of a patient who suffers from a pelvic insufficiency fracture is 69, thanks to our culture of encouraging active adult lifestyles among retirees.
Risk factors of pelvic insufficiency fractures include osteoporosis, diabetes, and kidney failure, because of the ways in which these conditions weaken the body. Another common reason for a pelvic fracture is radiation therapy, which is often used in cancer treatment. Patients receiving treatment for gynecological or colorectal cancers have a high incidence rate of pelvic insufficiency fracture due to the radiation negatively affecting the blood circulation in the pelvic region, which is critical for healthy bone cells.
Patients who have undergone total hip arthroplasty are also at a much higher risk of developing a pelvic insufficiency fracture, because the operation places impact on the pubic bone and the pelvis.
What Are the Symptoms?
Symptoms of a pelvic insufficiency fracture include lower back pain and pain in the buttock and groin region. This can also cause loss of mobility and movement in the pelvic area.
Treating Pelvic Insufficiency Fractures
The treatment for this type of broken pelvic bone depends on the underlying cause. If the pelvic bone was weakened due to a chronic disease, then the health condition needs to be addressed alongside treating the fracture. The underlying osteoporosis, diabetes, or kidney disease should be treated while also treating the fracture itself.
Many cases of pelvic insufficiency fractures can be treated without surgical intervention. Treatment usually focuses on the use of assistive devices (e.g., a walker) to offload the pressure on the pelvic region, and pain management with medication and physical therapy. If necessary, surgery may be utilized to treat the broken bone with medical-grade bone cement or other methods to fasten the bone fragments back together.
Pelvic Trauma and Fracture Treatment in Northeast Tennessee
Our experienced and highly skilled orthopedic doctors at Watauga Orthopaedics are here to treat simple and complex bone fractures, including those affecting the pelvic bone. We have trained in level-1 trauma centers, and we are ready to diagnose and treat your orthopedic trauma or fracture.
If you have any questions or would like to schedule a consultation with one of our outstanding physicians, contact Watauga Orthopaedics today by calling us at (423) 282-9011, or fill out our appointment request form online now. We look forward to being your orthopedic healthcare partners in the Tri-Cities area of northeast Tennessee.