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Outcomes of a disease-management program for patients with recent osteoporotic fracture

INTRODUCTION: The purpose of this study was to evaluate outcomes of a disease-management program designed to increase rates of bone-mineral-density (BMD) testing and initiation of osteoporosis medication among patients with a recent osteoporotic fracture. STUDY DESIGN: We identified 744 consecutive patients agedor=55 years who were seen at either of 2 of 14 Kaiser Permanente medical facilities in Northern California (KPNC) after sustaining a fracture of the hip, spine, wrist, or humerus between April 2003 and May 2004. These patients were invited to participate in a study of the Fragile Fracture Management Program, whose protocol used fracture-risk assessment tools to determine treatment recommendations. Postfracture care of study participants was compared with usual postfracture care received by osteoporotic-fracture patients at 12 other KPNC facilities. RESULTS: Of the 744 patients who were invited to participate in the study, 293 (39%) agreed to participate, and 169 (23%) completed the evaluation. Of these 169 patients (127 women, 42 men), 65 (51%) of the women and 7 (17%) of the men qualified for drug treatment; of these 72 patients, 6 (86%) of the men and 41 (63%) of the women accepted the offered treatment. At the two study locations, rates of care (BMD testing or prescribing osteoporosis medication) were about twice as high as rates of usual postfracture care observed at 12 other medical centers in KPNC. CONCLUSIONS: Compared with patients who received usual care for osteoporotic fracture, patients participating in a postfracture disease management program had substantially higher rates of medical attention given for osteoporosis; however, the overall yield of the program was low. This low uptake rate was related to factors not previously appreciated: many patients refused participation in the program; a high proportion of younger women-and men of all ages-did not qualify for treatment; and treatment was refused by one in three study-qualified women and by one in seven study-qualified men. Additional efforts are needed to overcome patient barriers to improved osteoporosis evaluation, treatment and participation in postfracture programs.

Authors: Che M; Ettinger B; Liang J; Pressman AR; Johnston J

Osteoporos Int. 2006;17(6):847-54. Epub 2006 Mar 29.

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