This report describes epidemiology, burden, and treatment of osteoporosis in each of the 27 countries of the European Union (EU27).
Introduction: In 2010, 22 million women and 5.5 million men were estimated to have osteoporosis in the EU; and 3.5 million new fragility fractures were sustained, comprising 620,000 hip fractures, 520,000 vertebral fractures, 560,000 forearm fractures and 1,800,000 other fractures. The economic burden of incident and prior fragility fractures was estimated at € 37 billion. Previous and incident fractures also accounted for 1,180,000 quality-adjusted life years lost during 2010. The costs are expected to increase by 25 % in 2025. The majority of individuals who have sustained an osteoporosis-related fracture or who are at high risk of fracture are untreated and the number of patients on treatment is declining. The aim of this report was to characterize the burden of osteoporosis in each of the EU27 countries in 2010 and beyond.
Methods: The data on fracture incidence and costs of fractures in the EU27 were taken from a concurrent publication in this journal (Osteoporosis in the European Union: Medical Management, Epidemiology and Economic Burden) and country specific information extracted.
Results: The clinical and economic burden of osteoporotic fractures in 2010 is given for each of the 27 countries of the EU. The costs are expected to increase on average by 25 % in 2025. The majority of individuals who have sustained an osteoporosis-related fracture or who are at high risk of fracture are untreated and the number of patients on treatment is declining.
Conclusions: In spite of the high cost of osteoporosis, a substantial treatment gap and projected increase of the economic burden driven by aging populations, the use of pharmacological prevention of osteoporosis has decreased in recent years, suggesting that a change in healthcare policy concerning the disease is warranted.