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Costs and quality of life associated with osteoporosis-related fractures in Sweden

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This prospective observational data collection study assessed the cost and quality of life related to hip, vertebral and wrist fracture 1 year after the fracture, based on a patient sample consisting of 635 male and female patients surviving a year after fracture. Data regarding resource use and quality of life related to fractures was collected by questionnaires at baseline, 4 months and 12 months. Information was collected by the use of patients’ records, register sources and by asking the patient. Quality of life was estimated with the EQ-5D questionnaire. Costs were estimated from a societal perspective, including direct and indirect costs. The mean fracture-related cost the year after a hip, vertebral and wrist fracture were estimated, in euros (€), at €14,221, €12,544 and €2,147, respectively [converted from Swedish krona (SEK) at an exchange rate of 9.1268 SEK/€]. The mean reduction in quality of life was estimated at 0.17, 0.26 and 0.06 for hip, vertebral and wrist fracture, respectively. Based on the results, the yearly burden of osteoporosis in Sweden could be estimated at €0.5 billion (SEK 4.6 billion). The patient sample for vertebral fracture was fairly small and included a high proportion of fractures leading to hospitalization, but they indicate a higher cost and loss of quality of life related to vertebral fracture than previously perceived.

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  1. The participating centers were: Södersjukhuset in Stockholm, Malmö University Hospital, Lund University Hospital, Norrlands University Hospital, The Hospital in Ystad, Helsingborg Hospital and Hässleholm Hospital.

  2. The following pharmaceutical categories were included: calcium and vitamin D, estrogens, bisphosphonates, glucocorticoids and pain medication.


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Financial support for this study was obtained from The Alliance for Better Bone Health. We are most grateful to the research nurses who collected the data. Without your help this study could not and cannot be conducted. Thank you: Ulla-Britt Ohlsson, Anita Söderqvist, Eva Ekström, Helen Wikdahl, Susanne Thomas and Karin Önnby.

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Correspondence to Fredrik Borgström.

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Borgström, F., Zethraeus, N., Johnell, O. et al. Costs and quality of life associated with osteoporosis-related fractures in Sweden. Osteoporos Int 17, 637–650 (2006).

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