Henry Ford Hospital Medical Journal


We examined the epidemiology of osteoporotic fractures in Croatia and correlated the results with data from other countries. We analyzed annual rates of wrist fractures in the large urban community of Zagreb and hip fractures in the Republic of Croatia. In addition, we determined mortality data and measured metacarpal bone mass In patients with hip fractures. There were age and sex differences in the incidence of both types of fracture. The incidence of wrist fractures is the same as in some Northwestern European countries, but the incidence of hip fractures is much lower. The mortality after hip fractures is high among the very aged, who tend to have less cortical bone per unit volume in the metacarpal. Wrist fractures are probably related to the rapid early postmenopausal bone loss, which is universal. Hip fractures, which occur preferentially in patients with low bone mass, may be less common in Croatia than in northern European countries, because of increased sun exposure and absence of vitamin D deficiency and secondary hyperparathyroidism in the very elderly.