Today, on the occasion of World Osteoporosis Day, the International Osteoporosis Foundation (IOF) has issued the first edition of a comprehensive and scientifically referenced report on osteoporosis.
The 'IOF Compendium of Osteoporosis' will be available in five languages, is to be periodically updated, and is intended as an authoritative reference document for all key stakeholders in the field of musculoskeletal health.
In addition to providing a concise overview of the pathophysiology, risk factors, prevention and management of the disease, the Compendium documents the prevalence of osteoporosis and related fractures both globally and regionally. It outlines current research on the epidemiology, mortality, health expenditure, and access to/reimbursement for diagnosis and treatment for each respective region of the world. The cycle of impairment and fracture in osteoporosis is also shown, illustrating the correlation between the number of fractures an individual suffers and the decline in physical function and health-related quality of life.
The projected increase in osteoporosis and fragility fractures documented in the Compendium is dramatic and is expected to pose a huge and growing challenge on healthcare systems. In 2010 the number of individuals aged 50 years and over at high risk of osteoporotic fracture worldwide was estimated at 158 million and this is set to double by 2040. The numbers of hip fractures - the fractures which result in the most morbidity, mortality, and healthcare costs - is set to more than double in populous countries such as Brazil and China by 2040 and 2050 respectively. In the USA, by 2025, the annual incidence of fragility fractures is projected to exceed 3 million cases, at a cost of USD 25 billion.
IOF President Professor Cyrus Cooper stated, "Fragility fractures, the clinically significant consequence of osteoporosis, impose a tremendous human and socioeconomic burden in all regions of the world. However, as documented in the 'IOF Compendium of Osteoporosis', there is persistent under-diagnosis and -treatment of individuals at high risk of fracture, including those who have already sustained a first fracture. Given the projected increase in fragility fractures in the coming decades, this is of great concern, both from a human and socio-economic perspective."
The 'IOF Compendium of Osteoporosis' proposes eight key priority actions which should be initiated by healthcare authorities, healthcare professionals, and concerned stakeholders in order to stem the burden of osteoporosis and fragility fractures. These include, first and foremost, the provision of Orthogeriatric and Fracture Liaison Services for all older patients who sustain fragility fractures to prevent a cycle of potentially debilitating and life-threatening secondary fractures.