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A Journal on Internal Medicine

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Minerva Medica 2005 October;96(5):343-52

language: English

Prevention and treatment of osteoporotic fractures

Gardner M. J., Demetrakopoulos D., Shindle M. K., Griffith M. H., Lane J. M.


With the aging international population, osteoporosis has become an epidemic. This painless disease is characterized by a decreased bone mass, resulting in decreased structural integrity of bone, and often goes undiagnosed. Typical osteoporotic fractures include vertebrae, hip, and wrist fractures, and these may have a dramatic impact on quality of life, even if the fracture is successfully treated. Many antiresorptive agents have demonstrated the ability to reduce the risk of osteoporotic fractures, and newer anabolic agents may further reduce risk. Non-medical treatments, such as external hip protectors and balance and low-impact strength training, are also very effective in preventing fractures. Before specific treatments can be addressed, however, osteoporosis must first be considered as a diagnosis in any patient with a low-energy fracture. This requires continued public health initiatives involving patient and physician education regarding the necessity for bone mass measurement and the merits of antiresorptive therapy.

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