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Lookup NU author(s): Dr Stephen Tuck, Emeritus Professor Roger Francis


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Osteoporosis is characterised by low bone mass and microarchitectural deterioration of bone tissue, leading to enhanced bone fragility and consequent increase in fracture risk. It is a common condition affecting one in three women and one in 12 men, resulting in substantial morbidity, excess mortality, and health and social services expenditure. It is therefore important to develop strategies to prevent and treat osteoporosis in both men and women. This paper reviews the pathogenesis of primary and secondary osteoporosis, as well as diagnosis, investigation, and management. This should include lifestyle changes to reduce bone loss and decrease the risk of falls, the identification and treatment of secondary causes of bone loss, and specific treatment for osteoporosis. Hormone replacement therapy, raloxifene, bisphosphonates, calcium and vitamin D, calcitonin, and parathyroid hormone have all been shown to improve bone density and decrease the risk of fracture in specific situations. it is important that treatment is tailored to the individual patient, to ensure compliance and optimise the potential benefits.

Publication metadata

Author(s): Tuck SP, Francis RM

Publication type: Article

Publication status: Published

Journal: Postgraduate Medical Journal

Year: 2002

Volume: 78

Issue: 923

Pages: 526-532

ISSN (print): 0032-5473

ISSN (electronic):

Publisher: BMJ Group


DOI: 10.1136/pmj.78.923.526


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