European Journal of Trauma

, Volume 31, Issue 1, pp 68–71 | Cite as

Bilateral Mid-Diaphyseal Femoral Stress Fractures in the Elderly

  • Glen Husada
  • Katleen Libberecht
  • Tom Peeters
  • Jacques Populaire
Case Study

Abstract

Background:

Osteoporosis is characterized by low bone density and poor bone mineralization. Mid-diaphyseal stress (insufficiency) fractures of the femur caused by osteoporosis are rare. The symptoms of these lesions are vague and confusing. The physician must be alert to the possibility of femoral shaft stress fractures when evaluating an elderly patient complaining of back, hip or leg pain.

Case Study:

A 72-year-old osteoporotic female patient with bilateral mid-diaphyseal stress fractures of the femur is reported. The diagnosis of femoral shaft stress fracture in the elderly is very difficult when based on physical findings and plain radiography only. A magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) scan or nuclear scintigraphy is necessary for early diagnosis. In the described case, the patient had an excellent result after surgical treatment with intramedullary nails.

Conclusion:

MRI or nuclear scintigraphy must be obtained to exclude the possibility of femoral shaft stress fractures in the elderly. In the absence of contraindications, surgery is the best solution for this kind of lesion.

Key Words

Osteoporosis Bilateral Stress fractures Femur Elderly 

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Copyright information

© Urban & Vogel München 2005

Authors and Affiliations

  • Glen Husada
    • 2
  • Katleen Libberecht
  • Tom Peeters
  • Jacques Populaire
    • 1
  1. 1.Departments of TraumatologyA. Z. St. DimpnaGeelBelgium
  2. 2.BierbeekBelgium

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