Osteoporosis, or porous bone, is a disease
characterized by low bone mass and structural deterioration of bone tissue,
leading to bone fragility and an increased risk of fractures of the hip, spine,
and wrist. Men as well as women are affected by osteoporosis, a disease that can
be prevented and treated.
Facts and Figures
Osteoporosis is a major public health threat
for 44 million Americans, 68 percent of whom are women.
In the U.S. today,
10 million individuals already have osteoporosis and 34 million more have low
bone mass, placing them at increased risk for this disease.
One out of every
two women and one in four men over 50 will have an osteoporosis-related fracture
in their lifetime.
More than 2 million American men suffer from
osteoporosis, and millions more are at risk. Each year, 80,000 men have a hip
fracture and one-third of these men die within a year.
strike at any age.
Osteoporosis is responsible for more than 1.5 million
fractures annually, including 300,000 hip fractures, approximately 700,000
vertebral fractures, 250,000 wrist fractures, and more than 300,000 fractures at
Based on figures from hospitals and nursing homes, the
estimated national direct expenditures for osteoporosis and related fractures
total $14 billion each year.
Bone is living, growing tissue. It is made mostly of
collagen, a protein that provides a soft framework, and calcium phosphate, a
mineral that adds strength and hardens the framework.