Osteoporosis International

, Volume 13, Issue 12, pp 990–995

How Many Children Remain Fracture-Free During Growth? A Longitudinal Study of Children and Adolescents Participating in the Dunedin Multidisciplinary Health and Development Study

  • I. E. Jones
  • S. M. Williams
  • N. Dow
  • A. Goulding
Original Article

DOI: 10.1007/s001980200137

Cite this article as:
Jones, I., Williams, S., Dow, N. et al. Osteoporos Int (2002) 13: 990. doi:10.1007/s001980200137
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Abstract:

While much is known regarding the incidence and pattern of fractures during growth, information is sparse as to how many children fracture repeatedly and how many remain fracture-free during growth. The Dunedin Multidisciplinary Health and Development Study, a birth cohort, whose members were questioned regularly throughout growth (at ages 5, 7, 9, 11, 13, 15 and 18 years) concerning injuries including fractures, has provided a unique opportunity to answer these questions. Life-table analysis showed that approximately half the children remained fracture-free throughout growth [girls 60.1%, (95% CI 54.7–65.0) and boys 49.3% (95% CI 44.0–54.4)]. Data on fracture history, for participants seen at every phase, was available for 601 members through to the age of 18 years (61.1% of the cohort seen at age 5 years). Two hundred and ninety-one of these 601 participants reported 498 fractures, with 172 sustaining a single fracture, and 119 more than one fracture (15.8% girls and 23.4% boys). The most common site of fracture was the wrist/forearm (24.1% of all fractures). We conclude that although bone fractures are a common adverse event in childhood, half of all children remain fracture-free throughout growth.

Key words:Birth cohort – Lifetime fracture history – Life-table analysis – Multiple fractures – New Zealand

Copyright information

© International Osteoporosis Foundation and National Osteoporosis Foundation 2002

Authors and Affiliations

  • I. E. Jones
    • 1
  • S. M. Williams
    • 2
  • N. Dow
    • 3
  • A. Goulding
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Medical and Surgical SciencesNZ
  2. 2.Department of Preventive and Social MedicineNZ
  3. 3.Injury Prevention Research Unit, Otago Medical School, University of Otago, Dunedin, New ZealandNZ