Objective: The purpose of this study was to estimate the excess mortality attributable to hip fracture.
Methods: The 6-year survival rate of community-dwelling White female hip fracture patients aged 70 years and older entering one of seven hospitals from 1984 to 1986 (n = 578) was compared with that of White female respondents aged 70 years and older interviewed in 1984 for the Longitudinal Study on Aging (n = 3773).
Results: After age, education, comorbidity, and functional impairment were controlled, the mortality differential between the two groups accumulated to an excess among hip fracture patients of 9 deaths per 100 women 5 years postfracture. Among those with three or more functional impairments or one or more comorbidities, the excess was 7 deaths per 100: the effect of the fracture had disappeared in these groups by 4 years. In contrast, those with two or fewer impairments and those with no comorbidities had a continuing trend of increased mortality, with an excess of 14 deaths per 100 by 5 years.
Conclusions: There is an immediate increase in mortality following a hip fracture in medically ill and functionally impaired patients, whereas among those with no comorbidities and few impairments, there is a gradual increase in mortality that continues for 5 years postfracture.