Few data are available about the incidence and costs of hip fractures in Italy. We aimed to determine the impact of hip fractures vs. acute myocardial infarction (AMI).Methods
We studied the national hospitalization database to calculate their incidence and costs in adults aged ≥45 between 1999 and 2002.Results
In 2002, there were 86,719 hip fractures with a 10.0% increase over 4 years. We observed a predominance of women (77.1%) and a strong age effect: 92.7% of patients were ≥65 years old and 80% of fractures occurred in women aged ≥75, showing a clear relationship with the incidence of osteoporosis. Hospitalizations due to AMI after 45 years of age in 1999 were only 9% higher than those for hip fracture, although this difference increased over the 4 examined years up to 24%. Considering the DRGs costs, hip fractures resulted in being more expensive than AMI overall and concerning elderly people.Conclusions
This study shows that in the Italian population aged ≥45, hospitalizations following hip fracture and AMI between 1999 and 2002 were comparable, while hip fractures' direct costs were higher and grew faster than costs for AMI. Hip fractures in Italy are a serious medical problem and a leading health-cost driver.