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ASBMR task force urges use of fracture liaision services to reduce costly osteoporosis bone breaks
Date:7/25/2012

Washington, DC An international expert task force is calling on health care providers to aggressively identify and provide care for the millions of people who have suffered their first osteoporosis-related fracture, in order to prevent subsequent fractures. In an extensive review of possible solutions to prevent these so-called "secondary fractures," the task force identified the most effective solution a system of patient care coordination called "fracture liaison services" that research has shown to significantly improve follow-up assessment and treatment after an initial fracture occurs, thereby reducing the likelihood of additional bone breaks. The most significant barrier to widespread use of the model is the lack of insurance coverage, according to the task force report which appears online in the Journal of Bone and Mineral Research.

The task force, convened by the American Society for Bone and Mineral Research, is urging health care providers to routinely provide osteoporosis testing and initiate treatment with medication as needed for all men and women over the age of 50 who have suffered a fracture. One major goal is a 20 percent reduction in hip fractures by 2020, when the United States and other countries around the world are expected to be hit with a wave of fractures because of an aging population.

"Fractures beget fractures and lead to untold suffering. Our task force looked at ways to break this vicious cycle," said Ethel S. Siris, M.D., co-chair of the task force. "We learned what works and what doesn't. The research is clear: fracture liaison services are saving suffering, and they are saving money."

Hip fractures are often the most serious type of bone break and the most expensive to treat. Each year nearly 300,000 older adults in the U.S. suffer hip fractures and more than 20 percent die within a year of their injury. Fracture liaison service programs such as the Kaiser Permanente "Healthy
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Contact: Sara Knoll
sknoll@burnesscommunications.com
301-652-1558
Burness Communications
Source:Eurekalert

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