Can securing the hip be synonymous with securing the future quality of life in the elderly?

Bone quality diminishes with age and the bone becomes more fragile, a disease commonly referred to as osteoporosis. Fragility fractures of the hip are quite common in the elderly. These fractures are stabilized using metallic implants. Due to the poor quality of osteoporotic bone, implants do not necessarily anchor well to the host bone. This leads to failure of the implant necessitating re-operations. While significant improvements have been made in order to increase the implant longevity, fixation failure is still a problem in orthopedic surgery. Re-operations are a burden for both the patient and the healthcare system and patients with complications hardly return to preoperative level of activity.

In this project, we use clinically approved biomaterials and osteoporosis medications and repurpose them to improve bone anchorage and regenerate bone around a metallic screw by controlled and targeted drug delivery. The aim of the project is to prevent re-operations with a hope of improving the quality of life among the elderly patients. This proof-of-concept study will be conducted in a large animal model and if successful, the study will pave way for controlled clinical trials.

A summary of the key concepts of the project are explained in the video which can be accessed by clicking the link below: