What to do if someone suffers a fall and damages their hip...
Every year roughly one in three adults over the age of 65 suffers a fall. Injuries from a fall can range from very mild bruising and swelling to broken bones. Falls happen more often to women than to men, mainly because women are more likely to have osteoporosis, a disease that makes bones weak. In fact, many hip fractures happen before the person falls over, and thus result in the fall; rather than the actual fall itself causing the hip fracture.
Hip Fracture Symptoms
The person will probably have a lot of pain in their hip or groin, and be unable to get up, and the skin around the injury may also swell, get red or bruise. If you think the person may have a fractured hip then do not move them, shout for help or phone for an ambulance, because a hip fracture can be a very serious medical emergency. Most people who have a hip fracture need an operation by an orthopaedic surgeon to fix the break in the bone. Any underlying osteoporosis should also be treated after a hip fracture, in order to reduce the chance of it happening again.
If you are a regular Female Focus reader the chances are that you are also a member of the Asociacion Amigos Europeos de Javea (AAEdJ) emergency ambulance service - so call 96 579 6099. We will immediately dispatch one of our state of the art ambulances to you. If you are living on your own and cannot get to the door to let us in, no problem, we will already have on our system the number of a neighbour or keyholder who we will call and ask to meet us at your house to let us in. We will have taken this person’s details from you when you register with us.
Our fully trained staff will ask you questions about the fall, possibly do a physical examination, and make an assessment; and in most cases a journey to hospital will be needed to undertake an X-ray, MRI or bone scan.
In order to get you into the ambulance without moving your hip unnecessarily, or causing you further pain, a special stretcher in two pieces will be slid underneath you from each side, which clasps together to form a strong single stretcher. All our ambulances carry these special stretchers, and we even carry neck and head braces and various joint braces as well. In extreme cases where it is very important that the patient should be completely immobilised and prevented from moving at all, an inflatable stretcher may be used, this inflates around the person and holds them firm.
Once the extent of your injuries are known and treatment has been given, you may be needing a walking stick, a pair of crutches, a zimmer frame, or even a wheelchair. We have all of these completely free for our members to use, all we ask is for a deposit which is entirely refundable when the item is no longer needed and returned.
Membership of the AAEdJ is just €50 for a whole year for the whole family. To join telephone and speak with Laure Bolufer the AAEdJ Registration Manager on 96 579 6099 (Laure works from 10am to 1pm every weekday). The AAEdJ ambulance service covers almost all of Costa Blanca North and will come straight to you wherever you are.