New guidance on the prevention and treatment of osteoporosis

Head office

27 Apr 2022

We welcome the publication of updated clinical guidance for the prevention and treatment of osteoporosis, with the aim of reducing fragility fracture risk. The guidance, which covers postmenopausal women and men aged 50 years or older, has been produced by the National Osteoporosis Guideline Group (NOGG), a multidisciplinary group of individuals that includes patient representatives and healthcare professionals.

Some of the key updates to the guidance are around vertebral fracture detection, with a new definition of ‘very high fracture risk’, and intervention thresholds for patients who are too frail to undergo bone density scanning.

The recommendations from NOGG also discuss the urgent need for medication to reduce re-fracture risk in people who have experienced a fragility fracture, including follow ups to check tolerance and adherence. Detail can also be found on anabolic treatment options, the use of intravenous zoledronate as a first-line drug treatment and concerns regarding denosumab cessation.

Lauren Wiggins, Director of Clinical Services at the Royal Osteoporosis Society, said:

“Fractures caused by osteoporosis are one of the most serious threats to living well in later life – and currently cost the NHS £4.5 billion per year. Early diagnosis and intervention are key to ensuring people with osteoporosis and fractures can live well.

“Therefore, clinical guidance for healthcare professionals, like this from NOGG, is important to ensuring people are not living with undiagnosed fractures and get the medication they need.”

Evidence based expert guidance is essential to ensure people with osteoporosis receive safe and effective drug treatments and other interventions to reduce the risk of painful and disabling broken bones.

The guidance and FAQs are available on the new NOGG website, which also links to an updated fracture risk assessment tool (FRAX).

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