Diagnosis and Treatment of Osteoporosis: What Orthopaedic Surgeons Need to Know

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Osteoporosis, often called a silent disease, is a systemic condition of bone as a result of loss of bone mass and deterioration of its microarchitecture. The result is weakened bone, leading to an increased risk of fragility fractures. An estimated 9 million osteoporotic fractures occur every year worldwide. However, the true incidence of osteoporotic fractures is unknown because many are undetected. Astoundingly, this epidemic equates to an osteoporotic fracture every 3 seconds. Orthopaedic surgeons need to not only treat these fractures but also understand the underlying pathogenesis and risk factors to help prevent them. The management of osteoporosis is a critical part of musculoskeletal care. We must be familiar with the tools to assess osteoporosis and the treatments available, including risks and benefits. This review article is intended to deliver a review of the vast literature and provide the orthopaedic surgeon with the essential information necessary to manage the current osteoporosis epidemic.

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