, Volume 12, Issue 11, pp 903-908

The Influence of Osteoporotic Fractures on Health-Related Quality of Life in Community-Dwelling Men and Women across Canada

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Health-related quality of life (HRQL) was examined in relation to prevalent fractures in 4816 community-dwelling Canadian men and women 50 years and older participating in the Canadian Multicentre Osteoporosis Study (CaMos). Fractures were of three categories: clinically recognized main fractures, subclinical vertebral fractures and fractures at other sites. Main fractures were divided and analyzed at the hip, spine, wrist/forearm, pelvis and rib sites. Baseline assessments of anthropometric data, medical history, therapeutic drug use, spinal radiographs and prevalent fractures were obtained from all participants. The SF-36 instrument was used as a tool to measure HRQL. A total of 652 (13.5%) main fractures were reported. Results indicated that hip, spine, wrist/forearm, pelvis and rib fractures had occurred in 78 (1.6%), 40 (0.8%), 390 (8.1%), 19 (0.4%) and 125 (2.6%) individuals, respectively (subjects may have had more than one main fracture). Subjects who had experienced a main prevalent fracture had lower HRQL scores compared with non-fractured participants. The largest differences were observed in the physical functioning (−4.0; 95% confidence intervals (CI): −6.0, −2.0) and role-physical functioning domains (−5.8; 95% CI: −9.5, −2.2). In women, the physical functioning domain was most influenced by hip (−14.9%; 95% CI: −20.9, −9.0) and pelvis (−18.1; 95% CI: −27.6, −8.6) fractures. In men, the role-physical domain was most affected by hip fractures (−35.7; 95% CI: −60.4, −11.1). Subjects who experienced subclinical vertebral fractures had lower HRQL scores than those without prevalent fractures. In conclusion, HRQL was lower in the physical functioning domain in women and the role-physical domain in men who sustained main fractures at the hip. Subclinical vertebral fractures exerted a moderate effect on HRQL.

Received: 1 November 2000 / Accepted: 23 March 2001