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01-01-2016 | Osteoporosis | Book Chapter | Article

1. Osteoporosis: Pathophysiology and Epidemiology

Authors: BSc, BM, MRCPCH Rebecca J. Moon, OBE, FMedSci Cyrus Cooper, MA, MB, BChir, PhD, FRCP Nicholas C. Harvey

Publisher: Springer International Publishing


Osteoporosis is characterized by low bone mass and microarchitectural deterioration of bone tissue resulting in increased bone fragility. Worldwide, there are nearly 9 million osteoporotic fractures each year, generating a massive burden both to individuals, in terms of associated morbidity and reduced survival, and to health services and wider economies. Furthermore, this burden is likely to increase globally as a result of urbanization of developing countries and an aging demographic across the majority of populations. In this chapter, we will review the pathophysiology and epidemiology of osteoporosis and fragility fracture, exploring mechanisms from cell biology to biomechanics and elucidating recent global secular trends in age- and sex-specific fracture rates.

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