Complications of a hip fracture 

Some people may take a while to recover from a hip fracture while others might never be as mobile as they were. Complications can also arise from surgery. 

Slow recovery

Not everyone will recover completely after having a hip fracture. It depends on how healthy you were before the fracture.

Some people may not regain their previous level of mobility and will no longer be able to live at home.

About three in every 10 people who've had a hip fracture die within a year. Around a third of these deaths are directly related to the fracture.

Complications from surgery

All types of surgery carry risks. Complications that can arise after a hip operation include:

  • infection – the risk is reduced by using antibiotics at the time of surgery and careful sterile techniques; infection occurs in about 1-3% of cases and requires further treatment and often further surgery
  • blood clots – can form in the deep veins of the leg, known as deep vein thrombosis (DVT), due to reduced movement, but can be prevented using special stockings, exercise and medication
  • pressure ulcers (bedsores) – can occur on areas of skin that are under constant pressure from being in a chair or bed for long periods

Your surgeon will discuss these and any other possible risks and complications with you before your surgery.


Page last reviewed: 18/07/2014

Next review due: 18/07/2016