Organization releases new guidelines for osteoporosis prevention and treatment

Osteoporosis affects as many as 44 million Americans, according to the National Institutes of Health. This week, the American Association of Clinical Endocrinologists (AACE) launched new guidelines for the diagnosis and treatment of postmenopausal osteoporosis. A summary of the report will be published in the next issue of the journal Endocrine Practice.

"We have used the best evidence to draft these guidelines, taking into consideration the economic impact of the disease and the need for efficient and effective evaluation and treatment of postmenopausal women with osteoporosis," said Nelson B. Watts, chair of the AACE Osteoporosis Task Force. "Right now less than one-third of the cases are diagnosed, and only one-seventh of women in the U.S. with osteoporosis receive treatment."

The new guidelines were created in order to reduce the number of osteoporosis-related fractures, by showing new treatments and preventative tools such as FRAX - a fracture risk assessment tool developed by the World Health Organization - and NOF, which was designed by the National Osteoporosis Foundation.

According to the report, AACE recommends that postmenopausal women who are at high risk for the condition should be screened as soon as possible, and all women over 65 should receive routine screenings.

According to the International Osteoporosis Foundation, one in three women and one in five men over 50 will experience fractures due to osteoporosis. Additionally, the National Osteoporosis Foundation reports that approximately 8 million women and 2 million men have osteoporosis in the U.S. Those who have the condition develop bones that become brittle and can fracture with minor falls. In severe cases, a bone can even break from a sneeze. Another 34 million Americans are estimated to have low bone mass and are at higher risk for the condition.
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