A new report from the International Osteoporosis Foundation (IOF) indicates that 80% of patients treated in clinics or hospitals following a fracture either face the risk of future falls or are not screened for osteoporosis. The report, “Capture the Fracture,” also notes that patients who are left untreated are at high risk of suffering secondary fractures, and potentially face a future of pain, disfigurement, long-term disability, and early fatality.

“Capture the Fracture” is a global campaign that aims to encourage concerted worldwide efforts to stop secondary fractures due to osteoporosis by implemented proven models of care. According to a recent news release, the report was issued October 16 during a joint media event with the National Osteoporosis Foundation (NOF) and Osteoporosis Canada as a nod to the upcoming October 20 Osteoporosis Day.

Bess Dawson-Hughes, MD, professor of medicine at Tufts University School of Medicine and General Secretary of IOF, emphasizes the campaign’s importance, as “Half of all individuals who go on to suffer a hip fracture have already come to clinical attention because of a prior fragility fracture…All too often the broken bone is simply ‘repaired’ and the patient is sent home without proper diagnosis and management of the underlying cause of the fracture,” Dawson-Hughes says.

Dawson-Hughes adds that the gap in care results in a cost of, “many billions of dollars worldwide. With the launch of the IOF Capture the Fracture campaign and this report, we are urging health care professionals and health authorities to implement proven cost-effective measures that will ensure that these high-risk individuals receive prevention, diagnosis and treatment of osteoporosis and related musculoskeletal diseases.”

The reports reinforces Dawson-Hughes’ statement, indicating that fractures are a burden on older adults and health care budgets, with costs exceeding that of many other age-related diseases, such as stroke, multiple sclerosis (MS), and Parkinson’s disease. The results also suggest that 20% of hip fracture patients expire in the year following the facture while 33% of older adults who sustain a hip fracture become physically impaired and lose their ability to live independently. 

The report also calls for a dedicated coordinator to head systems for secondary fracture prevention, based on a systematic literature review of successful systems for secondary fracture prevention worldwide. The coordinator’s role would center on serving as a link between the orthopaedic team, the osteoporosis and falls services, and the patient and primary care physician.

Find IOF’s report here.

Source: International Osteoporosis Foundation