Statement from Douglas P. Kiel, M.D., M.P.H. Regarding the New England Journal of Medicine Article “Postmenopausal Osteoporosis”
Date: January 20, 2016
Report Summarizes Enormous Benefits of Osteoporosis Drug Therapy to Prevent Fractures Among Those at High Risk, Underscoring the Importance of Screening and Treating This Disease
Douglas P. Kiel, M.D., M.P.H.
President of the American Society for Bone and Mineral Research (ASBMR)
Professor of Medicine, Harvard Medical School
Director of Musculoskeletal Research Center, Institute for Aging Research, Hebrew Senior Life
“This thoughtful review of osteoporosis is another wake up call to health care providers that patients with this disease are not being screened and treated despite the fact that we have excellent screening tools and effective drugs to prevent fractures. The article in this prestigious journal reinforces what bone scientists have known for years and what the evidence shows: that in the majority of cases, the benefits of using bisphosphonates and other fracture prevention drugs outweigh the risks.
“It’s critical that doctors and patients understand that there is overwhelming evidence that these drugs are extremely effective in preventing future fractures. We must close the treatment gap and prevent millions of people from suffering needlessly.”
An article featured in The New England Journal of Medicine published today highlights the enormous benefits of using bisphosphonates and other proven drug therapies in treating patients with low bone mineral density to prevent fractures despite rare potential risks.
The case vignette titled “Postmenopausal Osteoporosis“ which is authored by Dennis M. Black, Ph.D., of the Department of Epidemiology and Biostatistics, University of California, San Francisco, and Clifford J. Rosen, M.D., of the Maine Medical Research Center, summarizes the extensive research supporting the effectiveness of the drugs in increasing bone mass and reducing future fractures in osteoporosis patients.
Overwhelming evidence shows that osteoporosis is a massive public health problem nationwide.
- Nearly 65 percent of people in this country who are 65 years old and older have osteoporosis or low bone mass and are at risk for a fracture, according to data from the Centers for Disease Control. With the graying of our nation, the prevalence of the disease will rise.
- Currently only 25 percent of patients who suffer a fracture are treated to reduce the risk of future fractures.
- Hip fracture patients’ use of osteoporosis medications following fracture decreased from 40 percent to 21 percent between 2002 and 2011.
For interviews with Dr. Kiel, contact: Bridget DeSimone, 301-280-5735 or Carol Schadelbauer, 301-280-5725.
The American Society for Bone and Mineral Research (ASBMR) is the leading professional, scientific and medical society established to bring together clinical and experimental scientists involved in the study of bone and mineral metabolism. ASBMR encourages and promotes the study of this expanding field through annual scientific meetings, an official journal (Journal of Bone and Mineral Research®), the Primer on Metabolic Bone Diseases and Disorders of Mineral Metabolism, advocacy and interaction with government agencies and related societies. To learn more about upcoming meetings and publications, please visit www.asbmr.org.