Indian Journal of Radiology Indian Journal of Radiology  

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Year : 2012  |  Volume : 22  |  Issue : 3  |  Page : 178-181
Atypical femoral fractures related to bisphosphonate therapy

1 Queensland X ray, 76 Willetts Road, Mackay - 4740, Queensland, Australia
2 1985 Logan Road, Upper Mount Gravatt - 4122, Queensland, Australia

Correspondence Address:
Tarun Pankaj Jain
18 Barron Street, Deakin - 2600
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/0971-3026.107178

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Bisphosphonates (BP) are a commonly prescribed class of drugs for the prevention of osteoporosis-related fractures. Paradoxically, however, they have recently been linked to atypical fractures in the shaft of the femur. Since many physicians including radiologists, are not aware of this entity, the incidence is likely underreported. These fractures usually occur in the sub-trochanteric region of the femur in the setting of low-energy trauma. It starts as a fracture line involving the lateral cortex and then progresses medially to give rise to a complete fracture. The fracture line is usually transverse, and there is a medial spike associated with a complete fracture. These fractures can be bilateral. Awareness of these atypical fractures and their radiological appearance should enable their early and accurate detection and thus lead to specific treatment.

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