Cybermed Update September 2002

All sanity depends on this: that is should be a delight to feel heat strike the skin, a delight to stand upright, knowing the bones are moving easily under the flesh - Doris Lessing

World Osteoporosis Day (WOD) - 20th October 2002

Initiated in 1996 by the UK National Osteoporosis Society, WOD has been sponsored and promoted by the International Osteoporosis Foundation since 1997. In 1998 and 1999, the World Health Organisation played a significant role as a co-sponsor, thereby lending an even greater international weight to this annual event. The Bone and Joint Decade was an important co-sponsor of World Osteoporosis Day in 2000.

The WOD 2002 message is "Invest in your bones: Prevent the first fracture". Why does IOF emphasise prevention of the first fracture? The risk of a “cascade” effect resulting in future fractures is high ( for example, one out of five women suffering a first vertebral fracture will fracture again within one year). Also, high hospital and treatment costs make it more cost effective for government health care services and insurance companies to prevent the first fracture than to treat fractures. See the outline "Invest in your bones: Prevent the first fracture" (PDF, 213 KB), which briefly lists the consequences of osteoporotic fractures and how to take action for prevention.

The Facts about Osteoporosis and its Impact


Disease of the bones, characterised by a decrease in bone mass and density. The resulting weakness in the skeleton increases the risk of broken bones, particularly to spine, wrist, hip, pelvis and upper arm.

Also causes debilitating pain, loss of height and humpback. Death secondary to hip fracture is common due to pneumonia, other infections and cardiac insufficiency and outweighs death caused by many types of cancers.

Often referred to as a "silent epidemic" because it progresses without any outward sign, sometimes for decades, until sufferer experiences bone fracture.

Diagnosis often occurs after bones have broken. Early diagnosis possible using non-invasive bone density scans, which requires special equipment but is not frequently used in many countries for a variety of reasons, notably lack of health insurance or government reimbursement. Ordinary x-rays do not accurately measure bone density.


Hip fractures

Vertebral fractures


Hip Fractures



European Community




For further information on Osteoporosis, see........

The International Osteoporosis Foundation (IOF) is an international non-governmental organization whose bylaws were registered in Berne, Switzerland in 1987 as the European Foundation for Osteoporosis (EFFO). In 1998, EFFO joined forces with the International Federation of Societies on Skeletal Diseases (IFSSD), established 1995. IOF's mission is to advance the understanding of osteoporosis and to promote prevention, diagnosis and treatment of the disease worldwide.

The goal of the Bone and Joint Decade is to improve the health- related quality of life for people with musculoskeletal disorders throughout the world. These disorders are the most notorious and common causes of severe long-term pain and physical disability, affecting hundreds of millions of people across the world. The Decade aims to raise awareness and promote positive actions to combat the suffering and costs to society associated with musculoskeletal disorders such as joint diseases, osteoporosis, spinal disorders, severe trauma to the extremities and crippling diseases and deformities in children.

The NIH ORBD~NRC was established in 1994 with a grant from the National Institute of Arthritis and Musculoskeletal and Skin Diseases (NIAMS) of the National Institutes of Health to The National Osteoporosis Foundation. Its mission is to provide patients, health professionals, and the public with an important link to resources and information on metabolic bone diseases, including osteoporosis, Paget's disease of the bone, osteogenesis imperfecta, and hyperparathyroidism. The Center is operated by the National Osteoporosis Foundation, in collaboration with The Paget Foundation and the Osteogenesis Imperfecta Foundation.

In 1986 doctors at the Royal National Hospital for Rheumatic Disease in Bath were concerned that people were unaware of the risks of osteoporosis. Medical practice on diagnosis, treatment and prevention was patchy. The National Osteoporosis Society (NOS) was launched with the backing from the Department of Health and the Chief Medical Officer. Fifteen years later the National Osteoporosis Society (NOS) is the only national charity dedicated to improving the diagnosis, prevention and treatment of this fragile bone disease.

BoneKEy-Osteovision, the Bone Knowledge Environment, is the result of a cooperation between the International Bone and Mineral Society and Osteovision. This web-based site employs the highly sophisticated technology of HighWire Press, the leading electronic publisher of scientific journals.

The Doctor's Guide Personal Edition publishes the latest medical news and information for patients or those who know patients diagnosed with osteoporosis. Doctors can join in Internet research on health and medicine by becoming a member of the Healthcare Advisory Board. Established in countries worldwide to benefit and serve its members with the aim of improving overall medical communications, its purpose is to unite experience and expertise toward a goal of global improvement in health care advances.

As a non-profit resource center, Foundation for Osteoporosis Research and Education is dedicated to preventing osteoporosis through research and education including lectures, conferences and newsletters available through their website. Located in Oakland, California USA, the Foundation is a clinical research site, employing "state of the art" epidemiological bone density testing and international clinical research for pharmaceutical companies conducting osteoporosis related drug trials.

Osteoporosis Australia was formed in 1994 in response to community demand for information about Osteoporosis. Consumer and health professional services providing information, advice and education had been established as early as 1989.

The mission of the National Institute of Arthritis and Musculoskeletal and Skin Diseases is to support research into the causes, treatment, and prevention of arthritis and musculoskeletal and skin diseases, the training of basic and clinical scientists to carry out this research, and the dissemination of information on research progress in these diseases.

Locations of visitors to this page


With that I let your "mouse" or your "keyboard" do the "talking".

Till next month, "Happy Surfing".

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The links to URL mentioned above are valid at the time of writing (5 October 2002).

Last updated 15 January 2006.

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