Screening for osteoporosis

A report came out today focusing on the dangers of osteoporosis:

Americans of all ages must do more to protect their bones now to protect themselves from fractures and other related problems later in life, U.S. health officials warned on Thursday.

About 10 million Americans ages 50 and older already have the bone-weakening disease osteoporosis, and another 34 million risk developing it. By 2020, 14 million older adults could develop osteoporosis, with another 47 million at risk.

The report also called for bone density testing in women over 65 and anyone who breaks a bone after age 50.

These recommendations are roughly consistent with the USPSTF recommendations.

Some other facts from UptoDate:

* It is estimated that over 1.3 million osteoporotic fractures occur each year in the United States.

* The risk of all fractures increases with age; among persons who survive until age 90, 33 percent of women and 17 percent of men will have a hip fracture.

* The estimated cost of osteoporotic fractures in the United States in 1995 was $13.8 billion.

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