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Top Experts Compile Osteoporosis Guidelines for Older Adults

October 03, 2018

A coalition of more than 40 US and international bone health experts, health care professional organizations, and patient advocacy organizations have released their recommendations for the treatment of osteoporosis and prevention of secondary fractures in patients who have already sustained a hip or vertebral fracture.

The American Society for Bone and Mineral Research (ASBMR) Secondary Fracture Prevention Initiative Coalition presented the recommendations at the ASBMR 2018 Annual Meeting in Montreal.

These are the first recommendations to outline care for adults aged 65 years and older with hip or vertebral fracture and were developed in response to increases in the expected number of hip fractures and high-risk osteoporosis patients who need treatment.

Among the recommendations:

  • Communicate the likelihood of osteoporosis following fractures in older adults.
  • Make the patient’s primary care provider aware of the fracture.
  • Regularly assess fall risk.
  • Offer pharmacologic therapy for osteoporosis in adults aged 65 and older with hip or vertebral fracture.
  • Routinely follow up with patients treated for osteoporosis.

“Heart attack patients don’t leave the hospital without beta blockers to prevent another one. But every day, patients hospitalized for hip or spine fractures are not receiving treatments that research shows help prevent a second fracture that could lead to disability or death,” said Coalition Co-Chair Douglas P. Kiel, MD, MPH.

“All patients with hip or vertebral fractures need to be told that their broken bone most likely means they have osteoporosis and they are at very high risk for breaking more bones. Our goal is for patients, families, and their health care professionals to understand this and take actions to prevent future fractures,” concluded ASBMR President Michael Econs, MD.

—Michael Potts

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