Osteoporosis and fractures in women: the burden of disease

M. Lorentzon, H. Johansson, N. C. Harvey, E. Liu, L. Vandenput, E. V. McCloskey, J. A. Kanis

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

3 Citations (Scopus)
6 Downloads (Pure)


Osteoporosis is a disease characterized by impaired bone microarchitecture and reduced bone mineral density (BMD) resulting in bone fragility and increased risk of fracture. In western societies, one in three women and one in five men will sustain an osteoporotic fracture in their remaining lifetime from the age of 50 years. Fragility fractures, especially of the spine and hip, commonly give rise to increased morbidity and mortality. In the five largest European countries and Sweden, fragility fractures were the cause of 2.6 million disability-adjusted life years in 2016 and the fracture-related costs increased from €29.6 billion in 2010 to €37.5 billion in 2017. In the European Union and the USA, only a small proportion of women eligible for pharmacological treatment are being prescribed osteoporosis medication. Secondary fracture prevention, using Fracture Liaison Services, can be used to increase the rates of fracture risk assessment, BMD testing and use of osteoporosis medication in order to reduce fracture numbers. Additionally, established primary prevention strategies, based on case-finding methods utilizing fracture prediction tools, such as FRAX, to identify women without fracture but with elevated risk, are recommended in order to further reduce fracture numbers.

Original languageEnglish
Number of pages7
Early online date28 Jul 2021
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 28 Jul 2021
Externally publishedYes


  • epidemiology
  • fracture
  • Osteoporosis
  • postmenopausal


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