Prevalence and treatment patterns of osteoporosis in older men

January 01, 0001

Prevalence and treatment patterns of osteoporosis in older men

The aim of this study was to determine the proportion of older Australian men who meet the Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme (PBS) criteria for osteoporosis treatment and are receiving effective treatment. It consisted of a population- based, cross-sectional analysis of the baseline phase of the Concord Health and Ageing in Men Project (CHAMP), a large epidemiological study focusing on the health of older men. Data were collected through questionnaires and clinical assessments. Bone mineral density (BMD) of the hip and spine was measured by dual x-ray absorptiometry (DXA). Vertebral deformities were identified from DXA lateral vertebral fracture assessment images. The study was conducted at Concord Hospital, Sydney, between January 2005 and May 2007. It involved 1705 community-dwelling men aged 70 years or over from a defined geographical region around Concord Hospital. Of the 1705 men seen at baseline, 1626 completed all DXA scans and 401 (25%) met one or more of the PBS criteria for osteoporosis treatment.

Ninety per cent of the men who met the PBS criteria were unaware they had osteoporosis. Of the men eligible for PBS- subsidised treatment, 10% reported use of a bisphosphonate, 14% had taken calcium supplements, and 7% had taken vitamin D supplements. Only three men had taken calcium, vitamin D and bisphosphonates in combination.

The researchers concluded: "Despite a high prevalence of osteoporosis in elderly Australian men, awareness, diagnosis and treatment of the condition remain very low."

Probably a world-wide issue, depending on life- expectancy.

For the full abstract, click here.

MJA 193(7):387-391, 4 October 2010
© The Medical Journal of Australia 2010
Prevalence and treatment of osteoporosis in older Australian men: findings from the CHAMP study. Kerrin Bleicher, Vasi Naganathan, Robert G Cumming et al. Correspondence to Kerrin Bleicher:

Category: T. Endocrine/Metabolic/Nutritional. Keywords: prevalence, treatment, osteoporosis, older men, population-based, cross-sectional analysis, journal watch.
Synopsis edited by Dr Stephen Wilkinson, Melbourne, Australia. Posted on Global Family Doctor 22 October 2010

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