“I Fell All the Way Down the Stairs and I Didn’t Break Anything!”
First, my Aunt Henrietta Fell Really Hard when she tripped on a throw-rug. Next, her Bifocals tricked her coming in from the porch. Then, she slipped on the Ice that had All Melted Yesterday. Despite taking enough Adora Premium Chocolates Calcium and enough Vitamin D supplements, she added Fragility Fractures of both wrists and a shoulder to her prominant Kyphosis (hump-back) from multiple Vertebral Crunch Fractures.
Enough was enough. She decided to have no more fractures! She started the Anabolic, Forteo (Teriparatide). This is the one medication which primarily stimulates Osteoblast cells and will build new bone matrix. She said: “I guess I can do a shot every day.” But would it work? Unintentionally she put it to the test!
She had been taking Forteo for a year and a half when she climbed up to the attic to get a few things. With the full box she was carrying blocking her view of the stairs, she missed the top step and tumbled all the way down. Thud.
Henrietta hurt everywhere! Blood streamed from the gash in her head from hitting the wall at the bottom of the stairs. She was already bruising everywhere from her daily Coumadin.
But she could move. She had not broken a hip. She could crawl to the phone to get a friend to take her to the ER. She spent the rest of the day getting IVs for blood loss and 20+ stitches to stop the bleeding. X-rays, of everywhere that hurt, showed no fractures!
The next day she reported: “I fell all the way down the stairs and I didn’t break anything!” Amazing.
Jay Ginther, MD