Archives of Orthopaedic and Trauma Surgery

, Volume 133, Issue 8, pp 1101–1108 | Cite as

Surgeons save bones: an algorithm for orthopedic surgeons managing secondary fracture prevention

  • M. Gosch
  • C. Kammerlander
  • T. Roth
  • H. K. Doshi
  • R. W. Gasser
  • M. Blauth
Trauma Surgery


Postmenopausal osteoporosis has a big impact on health care budget worldwide, which are expected to double by 2050. In spite of severe medical and socioeconomic consequences from fragility fractures, there are insufficient efforts in optimizing osteoporotic treatment and prevention. Undertreatment of osteoporosis is a well known phenomenon, particularly in elderly patients. Treatment rates remain low across virtually all patient, provider, and hospital-level characteristics, even after fragility fractures. In-hospital initiation is one of the options to increase treatment rates and improve osteoporosis management. However, multiple factors contribute to the failure of initiating appropriate treatment of osteoporosis in patients with fragility fractures. These include a lack of knowledge in osteoporosis and an absence of a comprehensive treatment guideline among family physicians and orthopedic surgeons. Furthermore, orthopedic surgeons are hardly willing to accept their responsibility for osteoporosis treatment due to the fact that they are usually not familiar with the initiation of specific drug treatments. The presented algorithm offers trauma surgeons and orthopedic surgeons a safe and simple guided pathway of treating osteoporosis in postmenopausal women appropriately after fragility fractures based on the current literature. From our point of view, this algorithm is useful for almost all cases and the user can expect treatment recommendations in more than 90 % of all cases. Nevertheless, some patients may require specialized review by an endocrinologist. The proposed algorithm may help to increase the rate of appropriate osteoporosis treatment hence reducing the rates of fragility fractures.


Osteoporosis Secondary fracture prevention Fragility fracture Osteoporosis treatment Treatment algorithm 


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2013

Authors and Affiliations

  • M. Gosch
    • 1
  • C. Kammerlander
    • 2
  • T. Roth
    • 2
  • H. K. Doshi
    • 3
  • R. W. Gasser
    • 4
  • M. Blauth
    • 2
  1. 1.Department of Geriatrics and Internal MedicineHospital HochzirlZirlAustria
  2. 2.Department of TraumatologyMedical University of InnsbruckInnsbruckAustria
  3. 3.Department of OrthopaedicsTan Tock Seng HospitalSingaporeSingapore
  4. 4.Department of Internal MedicineMedical University of InnsbruckInnsbruckAustria

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