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Sixty Seconds That Can Change Your Life
Date:10/19/2007

Simple test assesses osteoporosis risk and helps provide personal action

plan for better bone health

CINCINNATI and BRIDGEWATER, N.J., Oct. 19 /PRNewswire/ -- One minute is all it takes to help understand your risk factors for osteoporosis, using a new test launched today by the International Osteoporosis Foundation (IOF) to mark World Osteoporosis Day. The one minute osteoporosis risk assessment test asks less than 20 simple questions about family history, medical history and lifestyle. It categorizes risk factors as modifiable (ones that can be changed) or fixed (ones that cannot be changed), and thus can help define a personal action plan for better bone health.(1)

According to the National Osteoporosis Foundation (NOF), osteoporosis and low bone mass are currently a major public health threat for an estimated 44 million U.S. women and men aged 50 and older. Ten million individuals are estimated to already have the disease and almost 34 million more are estimated to have low bone mass, placing them at increased risk for osteoporosis. Unfortunately, many people do not know they are at risk until after the first fracture. According to The 2004 Surgeon General's Report on Bone Health and Osteoporosis, as many as one in two women in the U.S. 50 years and older will have an osteoporosis-related fracture in their lifetime.

But people of all ages can aspire to better bone health, according to IOF President Professor Pierre Delmas of the Universite Claude Bernard, Lyon, France. "Knowing which risk factors may affect you is the first step towards improving your bone health, and if you believe you are at risk of osteoporosis, do not put off seeing your doctor -- make an appointment today. There are bone density tests which can help assess your risk."

Although it is not possible to influence fixed risks such as age, gender, and family history, it is possible to lessen their effect by consulting with a physician to alter modifiable risks. It is commonly believed that daily repetition can help form good habits in just one month, and habits such as exercising daily for thirty minutes and ensuring adequate amounts of calcium and vitamin D in the diet (or by taking supplements) can contribute to strengthening bones and reducing the chance of an osteoporosis-related fracture.(2) A consumer booklet entitled Know and Reduce your Risk of Osteoporosis has been produced by the IOF to educate people about important lifestyle choices that affect the risk of developing osteoporosis (available at http://www.iofbonehealth.org).

"If a person is already at increased risk of breaking a bone due to osteoporosis, then therapy should be considered," said Holly Thacker M.D., Director of the Women's Health Center at The Cleveland Clinic Foundation. "Unlike the situation a decade ago, there are now many treatment options available for people with osteoporosis, some of which have been shown to have a rapid effect on reducing fracture risk."

"Osteoporosis can be a debilitating disease, but there are steps you can take to reduce your chance of suffering a fracture," said Professor Delmas. "Taking the time to assess your risk and acting to reduce that risk will help maintain bone strength into the future."

About Osteoporosis

Osteoporosis is a silent disease that affects millions of postmenopausal women, making their bones weak and more likely to fracture over time. In fact, in the U.S. today, 8 million women are estimated to already have osteoporosis, and almost 27 million more are estimated to have low bone mass, placing them at increased risk for fracture. Each year the incidence of osteoporosis-related fractures is greater than the incidence of heart attacks, strokes, and breast cancer combined. The good news is that there are prescription medications available that effectively reduce both vertebral and nonvertebral fracture risk.

About The Alliance for Better Bone Health

The Alliance for Better Bone Health was formed in May 1997 to promote bone health and disease awareness through numerous activities to support physicians and patients around the globe. It is a collaboration between Procter & Gamble Pharmaceuticals and sanofi-aventis U.S.

About Procter & Gamble (NYSE: PG)

Three billion times a day, P&G brands touch the lives of people around the world. The company has one of the strongest portfolios of trusted, quality, leadership brands, including Pampers(R), Tide(R), Ariel(R), Always(R), Whisper(R), Pantene(R), Mach3(R), Bounty(R), Dawn(R), Gain(R), Pringles(R), Folgers(R), Charmin(R), Downy(R), Lenor(R), Iams(R), Crest(R), Oral-B(R), Actonel(R), Duracell(R), Olay(R), Head & Shoulders(R), Wella(R), Gillette(R), and Braun(R). The P&G community consists of 138,000 employees working in over 80 countries worldwide. Please visit http://www.pg.com for the latest news and in-depth information about P&G and its brands.

About sanofi-aventis

Sanofi-aventis, a leading global pharmaceutical company, discovers, develops and distributes therapeutic solutions to improve the lives of everyone. Sanofi-aventis is listed in Paris (EURONEXT: SAN) and in New York (NYSE: SNY).

For P&G: All statements, other than statements of historical fact included in this release, are forward-looking statements, as that term is defined in the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. Such statements are based on financial data, market assumptions and business plans available only as of the time the statements are made, which may become out of date or incomplete. We assume no obligation to update any forward-looking statement as a result of new information, future events or other factors. Forward- looking statements are inherently uncertain, and investors must recognize that events could differ significantly from our expectations. In addition to the risks and uncertainties noted in this release, there are certain factors that could cause actual results to differ materially from those anticipated by some of the statements made. These include: (1) the ability to achieve business plans, including with respect to lower income consumers and growing existing sales and volume profitably despite high levels of competitive activity, especially with respect to the product categories and geographical markets (including developing markets) in which the Company has chosen to focus; (2) the ability to successfully execute, manage and integrate key acquisitions and mergers, including (i) the Domination and Profit Transfer Agreement with Wella, and (ii) the Company's merger with The Gillette Company, and to achieve the cost and growth synergies in accordance with the stated goals of these transactions; (3) the ability to manage and maintain key customer relationships; (4) the ability to maintain key manufacturing and supply sources (including sole supplier and plant manufacturing sources); (5) the ability to successfully manage regulatory, tax and legal matters (including product liability, patent, and intellectual property matters as well as those related to the integration of Gillette and its subsidiaries), and to resolve pending matters within current estimates; (6) the ability to successfully implement, achieve and sustain cost improvement plans in manufacturing and overhead areas, including the Company's outsourcing projects; (7) the ability to successfully manage currency (including currency issues in volatile countries), debt, interest rate and commodity cost exposures; (8) the ability to manage continued global political and/or economic uncertainty and disruptions, especially in the Company's significant geographical markets, as well as any political and/or economic uncertainty and disruptions due to terrorist activities; (9) the ability to successfully manage competitive factors, including prices, promotional incentives and trade terms for products; (10) the ability to obtain patents and respond to technological advances attained by competitors and patents granted to competitors; (11) the ability to successfully manage increases in the prices of raw materials used to make the Company's products; (12) the ability to stay close to consumers in an era of increased media fragmentation; and (13) the ability to stay on the leading edge of innovation and maintain a positive reputation on our brands. For additional information concerning factors that could cause actual results to materially differ from those projected herein, please refer to our most recent 10-K, 10-Q and 8-K reports.

REFERENCES:

(1) The New IOF One-Minute Osteoporosis Risk Test, available at: http://www.iofbonehealth.org/

(2) International Osteoporosis Foundation. Know and reduce your risk of osteoporosis. Available at: http://www.iofbonehealth.org, last accessed 10.9.2007


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SOURCE The Alliance for Better Bone Health
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