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JAMA Clinical Guidelines Synopsis
April 14, 2015

Screening for Osteoporosis

Author Affiliations
  • 1Section of General Internal Medicine, University of Chicago, Chicago, Illinois
  • 2Department of Medicine, University of Chicago, Chicago, Illinois
JAMA. 2015;313(14):1467-1468. doi:10.1001/jama.2015.1064

The prevalence of osteoporosis in persons older than 50 years in the United States is estimated to be 16% of women (about 8.6 million individuals) and 4% of men (about 1.6 million individuals).1 In the United States, more than 1.5 million fractures per year are related to osteoporosis, including an estimated 300 000 hip and 700 000 vertebral fractures.2 Many patients who develop fractures experience a decrease in functional status, with up to one-third of patients entering nursing facilities within 1 year after a hip fracture; the mortality rate after hip fracture may exceed 20% in the first year.3 Low bone density is the primary risk factor for osteoporotic fractures, and treatment of patients with low bone density can prevent fractures.3