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NMMC Fragility Fracture Clinic

Orthopaedic Trauma Clinic
4250 South Eason Boulevard
Tupelo, MS 38801
Phone: (662) 377-5265
Fax: (662) 377-5260

 

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Fragility fractures can dramatically change the quality of life for patients and their families because of disability or loss of independence. To help patients reduce their risk of future fractures, North Mississippi Medical Center Orthopaedic Trauma implemented the Fragility Fracture & Bone Health Program.

Amy Ballard

Amy Ballard, MPAS, PA-C, is a board-certified physician assistant who is certified by the National Osteoporosis Foundation in Fracture Liaison Services. Ballard is a 2002 graduate of the University of Alabama at Birmingham Physician Assistant Program. Prior to physician assistant training she worked as a licensed physical therapist assistant for four years. She has served as president of the Mississippi Association of Physician Assistants and in various leadership roles at NMMC.

 

Ballard provides comprehensive care after a fragility fracture, and ensures appropriate action is taken to reduce the risk of future fractures. The program offers lab work, imaging, physical therapy and osteoporosis medical management.

What is a Fragility Fracture?
According to the National Osteoporosis Foundation, a fragility fracture is any fracture resulting from a fall from a standing height or less. Such fractures occur most commonly in the hip, spine and wrist. Normally, our bones should be able to sustain a fall from this height without a fracture, unless there is some underlying cause to suspect a bone disorder, such as osteoporosis or osteopenia that weakens our bone structure.

What is Osteoporosis?
Osteoporosis is a bone disease that occurs when the body loses too much bone, makes too little bone, or both. As a result, bones become weak and may break from a fall or, in serious cases, from sneezing or minor bumps.

Osteoporosis means “porous bone.” Viewed under a microscope, healthy bone looks like a honeycomb. When osteoporosis occurs, the holes and spaces in the honeycomb are much larger than in healthy bone. Osteoporotic bones have lost density or mass and contain abnormal tissue structure. As bones become less dense, they weaken and are more likely to break. If you’re 50 or older and have broken a bone, ask your doctor or healthcare provider about a bone density test.

 

About 54 million Americans have osteoporosis and low bone mass, placing them at increased risk for fracture. Studies suggest that approximately one in two women and up to one in four men age 50 and older will break a bone due to osteoporosis.

 

Source: National Osteoporosis Foundation

For more information on the Fragility Fracture & Bone Health Program, call (662) 377-5265.