WHAT IS A HIP PROTECTOR?
A hip protector consists of a pair of shields and a set of trousers or a belt which ensures that the shields are placed correctly. In the event of a fall on the hip, the hip protector shields will provide protection of the hip, thereby reducing the risk of a hip fracture.
WHY USE HIP PROTECTORS?
Hip protectors should be seen as a product that contributes to your own safety on the same level as seatbelt, lifejackets, helmets etc. It reduces the risk of serious injuries, lessens financial impact on society of hip fractures. To maintain a sense of security for the patient and increase mobility level as long as possible (lessens fear of falling).
WHY USE HIP PROTECTORS?
Hip protectors can help break a fall and not the hip
The Cochrane Study reviewed hip protectors for preventing hip fractures in older people looking at the effectiveness of hip protectors for preventing hip fractures. The Cochrane study was first published in 1999 and the evidence was promising.
A study where hip protectors were worn in 60% of falls, and the risk of hip fracture was reduced by nearly 3-fold by wearing a hip protector at the time of falling
SAFEHIP is the world’s leading hip protector and the effect is clinically proven and can reduce the risk for fracturing a hip with around two thirds
MEASURING THE EFFECTIVENESS
The effect of hip protectors based on results from number of clinical trials, shows that hip protectors can contribute to a reduced risk of sustaining a hip fracture, during falls, for elderly people or people with osteoporosis. Multiple studies concluded that hip protectors contribute to reduced risks of hip fractures.
THE ETHICS OF TESTING PREVENTION
Several pads have been tested with different types of impact in a test system and compared on their ability to attenuate force. Due to ethical reasons and the obvious risk associated with laboratory testing with human subjects, no fall tests have been performed on humans.
Several RCT studies on SAFEHIP® has been performed, showing that SAFEHIP® reduces the incidence of hip fractures when SAFEHIP® is worn properly.
LONG TERM RELATIONSHIPS FORMED BY HIGH PROFESSIONALISM AND GENUINE PROBLEM SOLVING
We insist on developing superior products of the highest quality and to exercise best practice in all we do.
We strive to be at the forefront of our field by listening to the needs of our partners and users, by constantly improving our products and processes, and by attracting and retaining highly skilled and motivated employees.
We seek to be a reliable partner in all our dealings and to earn the confidence of our customers and users.
The needs of our stakeholders – our customers, our users, our employees, society and the environment – guides us in everything do.
REDUCTION OF FORCES APPLIED ON THE HIP
Hip protector’s aims to reduce the potential forces applied on the hip, from contact between the hips and ground during falls. Padded solutions for hip protectors have shown to reduce impact forces in laboratory test. Result show that hip protectors are able to attenuate up to 40% of the impact force.
If this attenuation of force is transferable, to worn hip protectors in real life situations, then hip protectors could be an effective tool to reduce the risk of hip fractures during falls, by reducing the potential impact force on trochanter. Tested with Simon Frazer University hip impact simulator, designed to test the biomechanical effectiveness of hip protectors, that is compatible with the proposed guidelines for biomechanical testing of hip protectors.
HIP PROTECTORS ONLY WORK WHEN THEY ARE WORN!
If a hip protector is not worn, it cannot prevent a fracture of the femoral bone. Compliance is sought improved by numerous initiatives covering the use of soft shielded hip protectors in test environments where studies show that significantly more used the soft protector 24 hours a day because they were more comfortable. Also, education, motivation and proper instruction of users, relatives and caregivers in the use and importance of wearing the hip protectors are ways of motivating use.
DOCUMENTATION FROM W.J. CHOI ET AL. / JOURNAL OF BIOMECHANICS 43 (2010) 818–825
Pressure distribution profiles with centrally placed hip protectors and 20 cm drop height. (a) Definition of four different areas over the hip region: area A, danger zone (light gray) consisted of a C-shaped region of width 5 cm (sum of a half-circle of radius 2.5 cm centered at the GT and rectangle extending distally 16 cm from the GT); areas B, C, and D (progressively darker gray) consisted of C-shaped hollow regions of width 10, 15, and 20 cm each. (b) In the unpadded condition, a large pressure concentrated on a small contact area at the GT, within the danger zone. Note the large variation in magnitude of pressure (indicated by color scales at right; pressure calibrations are in N/cm2 (1 N/cm2=10 kPa)). (c) With the 16 mm thick continuous protector, the pressure was fairly evenly distributed over the hip region and the contact area was large, but considerable pressure was still applied to the danger zone. (d) With the 14 mm thick horseshoe protector, the pressure was unevenly distributed and the contact area was large; whereas much of the pressure was deflected away from the danger zone, considerable pressure was still applied directly on the GT. (e) With the 16 mm thick horseshoe protector, most of the pressure was redistributed away from the danger zone, over a large contact area covering soft tissues. Note that essentially no pressure was applied directly onto the GT.
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LEADING STUDIES REGARDING THE EFFECTIVENESS OF HIP PROTECTORS
- Robinovitch SN, Evans SL, Minns J, et al. Hip protectors: recommendations for biomechanical testing--an international consensus statement (part I). Osteoporos Int. 2009;20(12):1977-1988. doi:10.1007/s00198-009-1045-4
- Meyer G, Warnke A, Bender R, Muhlhauser I. Effect on hip fractures of increased use of hip protectors in nursing homes: cluster randomised controlled trial. BMJ 2003;326(7380):76-8. [MEDLINE: 12521969
- Forsén L, Søgaard AJ, Sandvig S, Schuller A, Røed U, Arstad C. Risk of hip fracture in protected and unprotected falls in nursing homes in Norway. Inj Prev. 2004;10(1):16-20. doi:10.1136/ip.2003.003889
- Kannus P, Parkkari J, Niemi S, Pasanen M, Palvanen M, Jarvinen M, et al. Prevention of hip fracture in elderly people with use of a hip protector. New England Journal of Medicine 2000;343(21):1506-13. [MEDLINE: 11087879]
- Cameron ID, Cumming RG, Kurrle SE, Quine S, Lockwood K, Salkeld G, et al. A randomised trial of hip protector use by frail elderly older women living in their own homes. Injury Prevention 2003;9(2):138-41. [MEDLINE: 12810740]
- Korall AMB, Feldman F, Yang Y, Cameron ID, Leung PM, Sims-Gould J, Robinovitch SN. Effectiveness of Hip Protectors to Reduce Risk for Hip Fracture from Falls in Long-Term Care. J Am Med Dir Assoc. 2019 Nov;20(11):1397-1403.e1. doi: 10.1016/j.jamda.2019.07.010. Epub 2019 Aug 30. PMID: 31477556.
- Chan DK, Hillier G, Coore M, Cooke R, Monk R, Mills J, et al. Effectiveness and acceptability of a newly designed hip protector: a pilot study. Archives of Gerontology and Geriatrics 2000;30(1):25-34. [EMBASE: 2000058180]
- Koike T, Orito Y, Toyoda H, Tada M, Sugama R, Hoshino M, et al. External hip protectors are effective for the elderly with higher-than-average risk factors for hip fractures. Osteoporosis International 2009;20(9):1613-20. [MEDLINE: 19137351]
- Bentzen H, Bergland A, Forsén L. Risk of hip fractures in soft protected, hard protected, and unprotected falls. Inj Prev. 2008 Oct;14(5):306-10. doi: 10.1136/ip.2007.018275. PMID: 18836047.
- Harada A, Mizuno M, Takemura M, Tokuda H, Okuizumi H, Niino N. Hip fracture prevention trial using hip protectors in Japanese nursing homes. Osteoporosis International 2001;12(3):215-21. [MEDLINE: 11315240]