Osteoporosis

Our bones are living tissue that give our body structure, allow us to move and protect our organs. Osteoporosis is a condition where bones become thin and  lose their strength. This can lead to fractures, which cause pain and make everyday activities extremely difficult. After a hip fracture, about one-quarter of people die or never walk again. 

It’s estimated over 200 million women have osteoporosis. That’s more than the combined populations of the Germany, the United Kingdom and France.

Worldwide, one in three women and one in five men over the age of fifty will experience an osteoporotic fracture.

In fact, every three seconds a bone will break, somewhere in the world, because of this disease.

Many people won’t know they have osteoporosis until their first fracture, which is why it’s called the ‘silent disease’. Even after a break, it often goes untreated.

The good news is osteoporosis can be diagnosed and treated and fractures often prevented through healthy lifestyle choices.
 

Our Bone Health Advocates

Gro Harlem Brundtland, former director general, World Health Organization, in an exclusive interview given to IOF, January 1999

Twenty-five years ago, the world's leading experts in cardiovascular diseases warned of an impending epidemic of heart disease in developing countries. This warning was largely ignored and we are now seeing a dramatic increase in prevalence of cardiovascular diseases in the developing world. We must not allow the same thing to happen for osteoporosis. We must act now.

Ana Shepherd, circus performer

Osteoporosis affects one in three women (over the age of 50) – that’s more than get breast cancer. You don’t have to join a circus to get the exercise you need – that’s the good news – just dance, move around, play sports – your bones will appreciate it. “Move it or Lose it”.

René Rizzoli, IOF Treasurer and CSA Vice-Chair

IOF's scientific members carry out a broad range of research projects, participate in educational programs and provide valuable support to the patient movement.