Is hypothyroidism associated with outcomes in fracture patients? Data from a trauma registry

Document Type



Orthopaedic Surgery; Diabetes/Endocrinology and Metabolism; Biological and Biomedical Sciences


Background: Previous research reports suggesting the susceptibility of patients with hypothyroidism to fragility fractures. The current study aimed to compare injury factors, patient factors, and outcomes of fractures in patients with and without hypothyroidism.
Methods: Study data were extracted from an ongoing single-center prospective orthopaedic trauma registry at a tertiary care hospital. Patients recruited between June 2015 and March 2020 were selected. Patients were grouped into those with and without hypothyroidism, and data on injury factors, management, clinical, and functional outcomes up to 6 mo were compared. Relation of fracture with TSH levels and age was analyzed, and prescription of bone-strengthening supplements was recorded in the hypothyroid group.
Results: Among 1347 patients recruited in the trauma registry, 35 patients had hypothyroidism of which 77% were females compared to 30% of euthyroid subjects (P = 0.0001). The most commonly involved anatomic sites identified were the proximal femur and proximal humerus. Low-energy trauma more likely occurred in hypothyroid (71%) compared to 32% of euthyroid subjects (P < 0.001). Osteoporosis was identified in 90% of hypothyroid subjects who underwent a DEXA scan. The clinical and functional outcomes of patients seem to be similar in both groups, possibly due to adequate control of hypothyroidism or the effect of bone-strengthening supplements given to hypothyroid patients. Serum TSH level and age were not related to low-energy trauma in hypothyroid patients.
Conclusions: The current study identified that patients with hypothyroidism presenting with fractures are more likely females with low-energy trauma, involving the proximal femoral, and humeral fractures. Thyroid status was not associated with post-management outcomes.


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Journal of Surgical Research