Individuals face a higher risk of dying following hip fractures and living alone after experiencing a hip fracture may further elevate this risk.

A study published in the Journal of Bone and Mineral Research looked at patients' living situations, which is an indicator of a person's social support, to examine whether this predicts mortality in the general population.

Researchers looked at information on hip fractures from all hospitals in Norway from 2002 to 2013, and they combined the data with the 2001 National Population and Housing Census.

During 12.8 years of follow-up in 12,770 men and 22,067 women with hip fractures at ages 50 to 79 years, higher rates of death were seen in both men and women living alone versus those living with a partner (a 37% higher risk in men and a 23% higher risk in women).

Strongest risk in male hip fracture patients

The study demonstrated the strongest association in male hip fracture patients aged <60 years (long‐term mortality HR = 3.29, 95% CI 2.25—6.49).

Compared with the general population, relative survival eight years after a hip fracture was 43% in men and 61% in women living alone, whereas relative survival in those living with a partner was 51% in men and 67% in women.

Hip fracture is associated with excess mortality, persisting for many years after the fracture. Several factors may affect survival; however, the role of social support has been less studied.