Osteoporosis is common, can have devastating impact, may have no symptoms, osteoporosis is treatable
There are over 1,100 deaths every month following a hip fracture, in the UK. At London Osteoporosis Clinic, we think this is unacceptable especially when many of these fractures could have been prevented.
Osteoporosis is a condition in which bones become fragile and if not treated, can progress painlessly until a bone breaks.
Osteoporosis is common
There are over 300,000 osteoporosis related fractures in the UK per year, yet many fractures can be prevented by treatment.
The bones in our skeleton are made of a thick outer shell and a strong inner mesh filled with collagen (protein), calcium salts and other minerals. The bone structure is lattice-like.
Osteoporosis occurs when the spokes of the lattice thin and break. Although osteoporosis usually affects the whole skeleton, the most common fractures are in the wrist, spine and hip.
Osteoporosis fractures occur
Key facts about osteoporosis
- 1 in 2 women and 1 in 5 men in the UK will have osteoporosis over the age of 50
- Every 3 minutes, someone has a fracture due to osteoporosis
- An estimated 3 million people in the UK suffer from osteoporosis
- Each year there are over 70,000 hip fractures (projected to be over 110,000 in 2016), 50,000 wrist fractures and 40,000 spinal fractures from osteoporosis
- Osteoporosis costs the NHS and government over £2.2 billion each year or £6 million each day (Reference: National Osteoporosis Society)
Signs and symptoms
There typically are no symptoms in the early stages of bone loss. But once bones have been weakened by osteoporosis, you may have signs and symptoms that include:
- Back pain, caused by a fractured or collapsed vertebra
- Loss of height over time
- A stooped posture
- A bone fracture that occurs much more easily than expected
- Life with osteoporosis – patient videos
Life with Osteoporosis
National Osteoporosis Society landmark study of impact of osteoporosis and fragility fractures on people’s lives.