About this book
The importance of osteoporosis in the United Kingdom as a cause of death and disability is now well recognised. There are in excess of 200,000 osteoporotic-related fractures in the UK per annum asso ciated with an estimated cost of £942,000,000. Following hip fracture it is known that about 50% of patients are unable to live indepen dently and about 20% of such patients die within the first 6 months. These figures, compelling as they are, reflect poorly on current medical practices which manifestly have failed to identify patients with low bone density at risk of fracture. The hope is that the techni cal advances which have enabled bone mineral density, and other allied indices, to be measured with high precision and accuracy offers the chance of identifying patients at risk of fracture and guiding the clinician to make treatment decisions which may reduce the patients' risk of fracture. In the UK, services for identifying patients at risk of fracture are still in their infancy and are not uniformly available throughout the country. This situation is, however, likely to improve particularly fol lowing the publication of the Royal College of Physicians report "Osteoporosis -clinical guidelines for prevention and treatment" and the recognition in "Our Healthier Nation" that osteoporosis pre vention should be included as a target to achieve a reduction of 20% in accidents by 2010.
bone care health management osteoporosis primary care public health