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Osteoporosis fractures: why once is enough

Posted by
Scott Fleming, Communications British & Irish Isles
20-Oct-2016
October 20th is World Osteoporosis Day - a chance to raise awareness of a condition that can cause significant pain and reduce people’s quality of life.

Like other chronic diseases, such as hypertension and hyperlipidaemia, osteoporosis is typically asymptomatic until a fracture occurs - thus it’s often called a "silent disease".

However, from that moment on, the impact of the fracture is felt: broken bones can result in severe pain, significant disability and even mortality.

It is estimated that 1 in 3 women and 1 in 5 men over the age of 50 will experience an osteoporotic fracture and once that happens the risk of further fractures increase.

Consider the statistics:
  • After a fragility fracture, an osteoporosis patient is 5 times more likely to suffer another fracture within a year.
  • After a fragility fracture, nearly 1 in 4 women will experience another within 5 years.
  • Nearly half of all hip fracture patients suffered a prior fragility fracture.
So as you can see, the first fracture should be taken as a warning sign. It should lead those at risk to talk with their doctor to determine whether they have osteoporosis and if they are at risk for future fractures.

Unfortunately, as documented by the International Osteoporosis Foundation, many “hospitals and clinics fail to "capture" that first fracture - leaving patients open to a future of suffering and debility”.

The World Osteoporosis Day campaign calls on people to be proactive and fight this silent disease. You need to take action and protect your bones!