Osteoporosis Testing Good for Men, Too
Study Backs Osteoporosis Screening, Treatment for Certain Groups of Men
Aug. 7, 2007 -- A study in tomorrow's edition of The Journal of the
American Medical Association sheds new light on an often overlooked
problem: osteoporosis in men.
The study shows that it may be cost-effective to screen and treat
osteoporosis in men aged 65 and older who had a history of a fracture and in
all men aged 80-85.
In osteoporosis, bones become dangerously thin, making fractures more
Osteoporosis becomes more common with age. Due to menopause, women tend to
develop osteoporosis at a younger age than men.
But osteoporosis in men isn't uncommon, note the researchers, who included
John Schousboe, MD, of Park Nicollet Health Services in Minneapolis.
By the time a white man is 60 years old, he has a 29% chance of fracturing a
bone due to osteoporosis during his remaining years. Fracture rates are lower
in African-American and Hispanic men, according to Schousboe's team.
Schousboe and colleagues calculated the cost-effectiveness of giving men
bone density scans to check for osteoporosis and to give men with osteoporosis
the osteoporosis drug Fosamax for five years.
The researchers based their calculations on bone density test costs, Fosamax
costs, and costs associated with bone fractures.
Based on certain costs, Schousboe's team concluded that osteoporosis
screening and Fosamax treatment would be cost-effective for men aged 65 and
older who have a history of fractures and for all men aged 80-85.
In the journal, the researchers note financial ties to various drug
companies, including Merck, which makes Fosamax. The study was funded by the
National Institutes of Health.
- Are you at risk for osteoporosis? Talk with others on WebMD's Bone Health and Osteoporosis