Globally, osteoporosis causes more than 8.9 million fractures in a single year.
More than one million women and men in Romania over the age of 50 suffer from osteoporosis, having a major risk of fragility bone fractures. Approximately 20.5% of women and 6.2% of men aged 50 and over in Romania suffer from osteoporosis.
Osteoporosis, whose name actually means “porous bone”, is a disease in which bone density is decreased, making the bone more fragile and prone to fractures. Bone loss occurs silently and progressively, and most of the time there are no other symptoms until the first fracture occurs. However, there are many factors that can accelerate the process of bone loss and lead to osteoporosis. Some risk factors cannot be influenced (genetic inheritance, female sex, small waist, early menopause, fragility fractures in the antecedents, the association of endocrinological, rheumatic, neurological, digestive, hematological diseases, etc.), while others can be influenced ( lifestyle, smoking, alcohol consumption, lack of exercise, poor nutrition, taking certain medications). Thus, after menopause, women are at increased risk of developing osteoporosis and suffering a fracture, due to the rapid loss of bone mass that occurs during this period of life. “October 20 is International Osteoporosis Day and it is important to emphasize once again the importance of raising awareness about the prevention, diagnosis and treatment of osteoporosis, a disease that affects an estimated 200 million people globally. With over 20 years of research experience in the field of osteoporosis, the Amgen company is active in combating this chronic disease and helping, through scientific activity that has borne fruit, to treat people with osteoporosis at high risk of fracture. Through correlated actions of early diagnosis and treatment, they considerably reduce their risk of fracture”, said Alina Culcea, General Director of Amgen Romania. Specific measures to reduce the burden of the disease The impact of this disease is a major one, the disabilities caused by osteoporosis generating extremely high costs for the health systems, as well as for the budgets of the families of those who suffer from this disease. Thus, one year after a hip fracture, 40% of patients can no longer walk independently and 80% need assistance for usual activities. Hospitalization days generated by osteoporosis exceed those for breast cancer, heart attack or diabetes, and after a fragility fracture, patients are 5 times more exposed to a second fracture in the next 2 years. Globally, osteoporosis causes more than 8.9 million fractures in a single year. Globally, a bone is fractured due to osteoporosis every 3 seconds. Globally, 1 in 3 women over the age of 50 will be affected by osteoporotic fractures, as will 1 in 5 men over the age of 50. 80 percent of people who fracture a bone due to osteoporosis remain undiagnosed and untreated. Fracture of a bone can be a life-changing event that can lead to pain, loss of mobility and a change in lifestyle. A woman’s risk of fracturing her hip is equal to the combined risk of breast, uterine and ovarian cancer. To reduce this burden, among other things, an early diagnosis in the case of osteoporosis is needed. A DXA scan, which is used to measure the bone density of the spine and hip bone, is the most common technique for assessing osteoporosis risk. Prescription treatments may be necessary to effectively reduce the risk of bone fractures associated with osteoporosis. The National Endocrine Disease Program provides reimbursement for the cost of dual X-ray absorptiometry (DXA) screening for osteoporosis and reimbursement for free treatment for people diagnosed with osteoporosis. Through this program, each year, more than 5,000 people with osteoporosis are treated. However, the DXA scan could be restricted by the small number of DXA machines in the country, as treatment is usually provided only to people diagnosed with osteoporosis by means of a DXA scan or to those who have already suffered a fragility fracture.