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 and appropriate medication for those in need.
 

Our Bone Health Advocates

Chalida Thaochalee, Miss Thailand 1998

I think it is particularly important for young girls and boys to exercise in order to build stronger bones to prevent osteoporosis later in life, because most people reach their peak bone density and strength in their teens and twenties. After peak bone mass is reached, bone density remains stable during adulthood and then declines with age. Weight bearing exercises are essential for building bone density and mass. However, to obtain bone benefits, exercise must be regular.

Julie Payette is chief astronaut for the Canadian Space Agency

Worldwide, one out of three women and one out of five men over the age of 50 suffers from osteoporosis. But the good news is that osteoporosis is preventable by eating right, by moving and exercising, and by knowing about it. If you would like to find out more about osteoporosis, visit the International Osteoporosis Foundation's website and take the risk test.

Rita Süssmuth, leading German politician

As health minister I came in contact with people affected from osteoporosis. It’s not sufficient to listen to them but to do more. We have to make a change, so I urge policy makers to take action on osteoporosis! It’s really important to eat a balanced diet and exercise. Move it or lose it!