Is the association between hip fractures and seasonality modified by influenza vaccination? An ecological study

M. Fraenkel*, M. Yitshak-Sade, L. Beacher, M. Carmeli, M. Mandelboim, E. Siris, V. Novack

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Summary: Osteoporotic hip fractures in 4344 patients were more common during winter. Lower temperatures were associated with higher rates of fracture only in those not vaccinated for influenza. Influenza outbreaks increased the risk of hip fractures. Further studies are needed to assess whether influenza vaccination can prevent hip fractures. Introduction: Winter seasonality of osteoporotic hip fracture incidence has been demonstrated, yet the explanation for the association is lacking. We hypothesize that the seasonality of osteoporotic hip fracture can be explained by an association between hip fractures and seasonal influenza outbreaks. Methods: This retrospective cohort study included all patients admitted to Soroka University Medical Center with a diagnosis of osteoporotic hip fracture (ICD-9 code 820) between the years 2001 and 2013. Patients with malignancies, trauma, and age under 50 were excluded. In a time series analysis, we examined the association between hip fracture incidence and seasonality adjusted for meteorological factors, and population rates of influenza infection and vaccination using Poisson models. Results: Four thousand three hundred forty-four patients with a hip fracture were included (69% females, mean age 78). Daily fracture rates were significantly higher in winter (1.1 fractures/day) compared to summer, fall, and spring (0.79, 0.90, and 0.91; p < 0.001). In analysis adjusted for seasons and spline function of time, temperatures were associated with hip fractures risk only in those not vaccinated for influenza (n = 2939, for every decrease of 5 °C, RR 1.08, CI 1.02–1.16; p < 0.05). In subgroup analysis during the years with weekly data on national influenza rates (2010–2013), the risk for hip fracture, adjusted for seasons and temperature, was 1.26 2 weeks following a week with high infection burden (CI 1.05;1.51 p = 0.01), while the temperature was not significantly associated with the fracture risk. Conclusions: Under dry and warm desert climate, winter hip fracture incidence increase might be associated with influenza infection, and this effect can be negated by influenza vaccination.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)2611-2617
Number of pages7
JournalOsteoporosis International
Issue number9
StatePublished - 1 Sep 2017


  • Hip fracture
  • Metrological parameters
  • Osteoporosis
  • Seasonality
  • Vitamin D


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