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Estimating the future clinical and economic benefits of improving osteoporosis diagnosis and treatment among women in South Korea: a simulation projection model from 2020 to 2040



Using a microsimulation model, the impact of increased diagnosis and treatment of postmenopausal women with osteoporosis on anticipated reduction in fractures and associated costs in South Korea from 2020 to 2040 was projected.


The economic burden of osteoporosis was US $5.1B in 2011 in South Korea. Osteoporosis is expected to strain resources in South Korea as the population most susceptible to osteoporotic fracture, females > 50 years old, is projected to increase by 32% from 2020 to 2040.


A microsimulation model was developed to project annual incidence and costs of osteoporotic fractures among postmenopausal women from 2020 to 2040. Fracture risk was estimated using the simplified Fracture Risk Assessment Tool (FRAX). The fracture estimates were based on annualized FRAX risk and impact of treatment. Korean National Health Insurance data informed treatment and case-finding rates in the reference case. Two scenarios were evaluated: 50% increases to (i) case finding (screening rate and subsequent treatment rate) and (ii) treatment rate among those at highest risk.


Among individuals modeled in the reference case from 2020 to 2040, 41.2 M fractures at a cost of US $263.6B were projected. Increased treatment scenario prevented 4.4 M fractures and saved US $13.5B. Increased case-finding scenario prevented 4.0 M fractures and saved US $11.1B.


Implementation of policies to enable increasing case finding or treatment may result in fewer fractures and substantial cost savings across the healthcare system. These results highlight the importance of early screening, diagnosis, and preventive treatment.

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This study was funded by Amgen.

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Authors and Affiliations



Author’s roles: Study design: MG, MJ, and ZW. Study conduct: MG, MJ, and ZW. Data collection: MG, MJ, and ZW. Data analysis: MG, MJ, and ZW. Data interpretation: MJ and ZW. Drafting manuscript: KHY, MG, MJ, and ZW with writing support from Kaushik Sarikonda and November McGarvey, employees of BluePath Solutions. Revising manuscript: KHY, MG, MJ, and ZW. Approving final version of manuscript: KHY, MG, MJ, and ZW. MG, MJ, and ZW take responsibility for the integrity of the data analysis.

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Correspondence to Zachary Wessler.

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Conflicts of interest

MG and MJ are employees of BluePath Solutions which has received funding from Amgen for this project. ZW is an employee of Amgen and owns stock in Amgen. KHY received consulting fees from Amgen.

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Jackson, M., Yang, K.H., Gitlin, M. et al. Estimating the future clinical and economic benefits of improving osteoporosis diagnosis and treatment among women in South Korea: a simulation projection model from 2020 to 2040. Arch Osteoporos 16, 115 (2021).

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  • Osteoporosis
  • Postmenopausal women
  • Burden
  • Policy intervention