Osteoporosis is a common disease that has a significant impact on patients, healthcare systems, and society. World Health Organization (WHO) diagnostic criteria for postmenopausal women were established in 1994 to diagnose low bone mass (osteopenia) and osteoporosis using dual-energy X-ray absorptiometry (DXA)-measured bone mineral density (BMD) to help understand the epidemiology of osteoporosis, and identify those at risk for fracture. These criteria may also apply to men ≥50 years, perimenopausal women, and people of different ethnicity. The DXA Health Informatics Prediction (HIP) project is an established convenience cohort of more than 36,000 patients who had a DXA scan to explore the epidemiology of osteoporosis and its management in the Republic of Ireland where the prevalence of osteoporosis remains unknown. In this article we compare the prevalence of a DXA classification low bone mass (T-score < −1.0) and of osteoporosis (T-score ≤ −2.5) among adults aged ≥40 years without major risk factors or fractures, with one or more major risk factors, and with one or more major osteoporotic fractures. A total of 33,344 subjects met our study inclusion criteria, including 28,933 (86.8%) women; 9362 had no fractures or major risk factors, 14,932 had one or more major clinical risk factors, and 9050 had one or more major osteoporotic fractures. The prevalence of low bone mass and osteoporosis increased significantly with age overall. The prevalence of low bone mass and osteoporosis was significantly greater among men and women with major osteoporotic fractures than healthy controls or those with clinical risk factors. Applying our results to the national population census figure of 5,123,536 in 2022 we estimate between 1,039,348 and 1,240,807 men and women aged ≥50 years have low bone mass, whereas between 308,474 and 498,104 have osteoporosis. These data are important for the diagnosis of osteoporosis in clinical practice, and national policy to reduce the illness burden of osteoporosis.
- BONE MINERAL DENSITY
- LOW BONE MASS
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Endocrinology, Diabetes and Metabolism
- Orthopedics and Sports Medicine