A recent study from Central South University found that the use of pain medication tramadol was linked to a higher risk of hip fractures compared with the use of other pain medications.
The study is published in the Journal of Bone and Mineral Research. One author is Guanghua Lei, MD, Ph.D. from Xiangya Hospital, Central South University.
In the study, the team did an analysis of a patient database from the United Kingdom.
They compared tramadol use with codeine, naproxen, ibuprofen, celecoxib, and etoricoxib use among adults aged 50 years or older.
During a one-year follow-up, they found 518 hip fractures occurred among 146,956 patients taking tramadol, corresponding to approximately one additional new hip fracture per 1000 person-years relative to taking codeine (3.7 vs. 2.9, respectively).
Likewise, up to 1.5 additional new fractures per 1000 person-years occurred with tramadol than with naproxen, ibuprofen, celecoxib, and etoricoxib.
The team says considering the big impact of hip fracture on morbidity, mortality, and healthcare costs, the results point to the need to consider tramadol’s associated risk of fracture in clinical practice and treatment guidelines.
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