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Older men at risk of frequent fractures

After sustaining initial fractures, older men and women are at a risk of subsequent fracture.

india Updated: Jan 24, 2007 18:24 IST

After sustaining an initial low-trauma fracture, older men and women have a similar and substantial risk of subsequent fracture, according to a study in the January of JAMA.

Despite substantial evidence that a prior fracture results in an increased risk of subsequent fracture, less than 30 percent ofpost-menopausal women and less than 10 percent of men with prior fracture are treated to help lower this risk.

Although some of this deficiency in treatment is due to the overall lack of awareness of osteoporosis by the public and primary care-givers, the relative importance of prior fracture in relation to subsequent fracture risk does not appear to be fully appreciated, particularly in men, according to background information in the article.

There are few published long-term studies on absolute risk of re-fracture in women, and fewer in men. There were 905 women and 337 men with an initial fracture, of whom 253 women and 71 men experienced a subsequent fracture. Women had nearly twice the risk of re-fracture, while men had 3.5 times the risk of re-fracture. The absolute risk of subsequent fracture was similar in women and men. The increase in absolute fracture risk remained for up to 10 years, by which time 40 percent to 60 percent of surviving women and men experienced a subsequent fracture.

First Published: Jan 25, 2007 08:30 IST