Introduction: More than one-third of postmenopausal women, more than 40 million in the USA, have osteoporosis and more than eight million will have a fracture. Osteoporosis is hastened after menopause and can lead to kyphoscoliosis, pain, respiratory difficulty, vertebral, hip and other fractures. Besides pain and surgery, hip fractures can lead to death, deep venous thrombosis, or pulmonary embolism. When a woman has a hip fracture, she needs extensive rehabilitation, which often necessitates help and dependence, moving into a rehab facility, someone else's home, or a nursing home. Hip fractures often lead to a loss of independence for single or widowed women. Definition. Osteoporosis (OP) occurs when an individual develops a low bone density or mass (BMD, bone mineral density), resulting in an increased risk of fractures. This occurs in both women and men, but there is an increased rate of bone loss in postmenopausal women. OP leads to an increased risk of fractures that result in health complications such as pneumonia, lung disease, thromboembolic disease, chronic pain, disability, and loss of independence. Epidemiology. OP is common and its incidence increases with age. The prevalence of OP in women age 50 to 54 in the UK is between 2 and 3.5%. The prevalence rises to 14-20% in women age 70-74. OP causes more than 150,000 fractures in the UK yearly, including 60,000 hip fractures. With decreasing bone density there is an increasing risk of fractures. A decrease of one standard deviation from the normal of the BMD of a 19-year-old increases the risk of fracture 1.5-to 3-fold.
ASJC Scopus subject areas