In postmenopausal women, osteoporotic fractures are more common than stroke, myocardial infarction, and breast cancer combined, and fractures can be costly and result in disability or death. Because there are no signs or symptoms of osteoporosis other than fracture, risk assessment is necessary to identify those at higher risk for clinical events. For women, a clinical fracture risk assessment (FRAX) is appropriate at menopause. Bone mineral density (BMD) measurement is recommended for women at age 65, and earlier for those who have risk factors. Adequate calcium, vitamin D, and weight-bearing exercise are important for bone health at all ages, and those at high risk for fracture based on BMD or FRAX should be offered medical therapy to reduce fracture risk after an appropriate medical evaluation. Bisphosphonates can accumulate in bone, so after a period of treatment, lower risk patients may be offered a period off drug therapy. However, the effects of denosumab are not sustained when treatment is discontinued, so there is no "drug holiday" with denosumab. Anabolic therapy can be offered to those with higher risk for fracture. Although rare safety concerns regarding atypical femoral fracture and osteonecrosis of the jaw have received prominent attention, for patients who are appropriately treated according to National Osteoporosis Foundation guidelines, the benefit of hip fracture risk reduction far outweighs the risk of these uncommon side effects. Accurate information for patients and shared decision-making are important for acceptance and persistent with appropriate treatment.





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