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April 1987

Beliefs About Osteoporosis: A Critical Appraisal

Author Affiliations

From the Geriatric Research, Education, and Clinical Center, Veterans Administration Medical Center, and the Department of Medicine, University of Florida, Gainesville.

Arch Intern Med. 1987;147(4):762-765. doi:10.1001/archinte.1987.00370040144025

• The awareness of osteoporosis as a common problem with a large degree of associated morbidity has increased recently. In this article, three beliefs concerning osteoporosis are examined. These beliefs concern the usefulness of radiologic screening for osteoporosis, the prevalence of osteoporotic fractures, and the benefit of calcium supplementation. It is concluded that as a widely used screening test, radiologic examination does not greatly aid in the estimation of risk of future bone fracture; that fewer than one fourth of women will ever have a meaningful complication from excessive bone loss; and that, although low calcium intake is probably inadvisable, the present data do not allow us to recommend any certain level of calcium intake as being optimal.

(Arch Intern Med 1987;147:762-765)