Who gets osteoporosis?

The risk of osteoporosis is greater in:

  • Women after the menopause
  • Caucasian and Asian women
  • Women with a family history of osteoporosis
  • Women with small bone frames, thin women
  • Women and men with certain uncommon medical conditions (such as hyperparathyroidism) or use of certain medications such as cortisone, heparin, seizure medicines, and in some cancer treatments.

Osteoporosis Statistics for New Zealand

Fractures caused by osteoporosis are painful and can severly reduce your quality of life.

More than 3000 New Zealanders break a hip each year. This figure is expected to rise to 4800 in ten years time as our population ages. We have to prevent this from happening.

About a third of people who fracture a hip die within a year from related complications. Another third never return home. Many who do lose their mobility and independence.

More women are hospitalised with a hip fracture due to osteoporosis than through breast cancer.

How do I know if I have osteoporosis?

There are normally no symptoms until a fracture occurs.This is why it is sometimes called a “silent disease”.

However, a simple fracture of the wrist or foot from a low impact injury, or a cracked rib from coughing may be an early warning sign. Also mid-back pain can be an indication of vertebral collapse. If any of these situations occur, people are advised to have an assessment.

For more information regarding testing, please click here.