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Osteoporosis management in older patients who experienced a fracture

Authors Oertel MJ, Graves L, Al-Hihi E, Leonardo V, Hopkins C, DeSouza K, Bhattacharya R

Received 3 March 2016

Accepted for publication 10 May 2016

Published 22 August 2016 Volume 2016:11 Pages 1111—1116


Checked for plagiarism Yes

Review by Single anonymous peer review

Peer reviewer comments 2

Editor who approved publication: Dr Richard Walker

Mark J Oertel,1 Leland Graves,1 Eyad Al-Hihi,2 Vincent Leonardo,3 Christina Hopkins,2 Kristin DeSouza,2 Rajib K Bhattacharya1

1Division of Endocrinology, Metabolism and Genetics, Department of Medicine, 2Department of Internal Medicine, 3Department of Enterprise Analytics, University of Kansas Medical Center, Kansas City, KS, USA

Background: Fractures in older patients are common, morbid, and associated with increased risk of subsequent fractures. Inpatient and outpatient management and treatment of fractures can be costly. With more emphasis placed on quality care for Medicare beneficiaries, we studied if patients were receiving proper screening for osteoporosis and treatment after diagnosis of fracture. This study aims to determine if adequate screening and treatment for osteoporosis occurs in the postfracture period.
Methods: A retrospective analysis of Medicare beneficiaries aged 67 years or older was gathered from a single institution in both inpatient and outpatient visits. Based on International Classification of Diseases ninth revision codes, primary diagnosis of fractures of neck and trunk, upper limb, and lower limb were obtained in addition to current procedural terminology codes for fracture procedures. We studied patients who had been screened for osteoporosis with a bone mineral study or received osteoporosis treatment after their fracture.
Results: Medicare beneficiaries totaling 1,375 patients were determined to have an inclusion fracture between June 1, 2013 and November 30, 2014. At the time of our analysis on December 1, 2014, 1,219 patients were living and included in the analysis. Of these patients, 256 (21.0%) either received osteoporosis testing with bone mineral density or received treatment for osteoporosis. On sex breakdown, 208/820 (25.4%) females received proper evaluation or treatment of osteoporosis in comparison to 48/399 (12.0%) males. This is in comparison to the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services’ national average of 19.1% for osteoporosis management in females.
Conclusion: A minority of studied patients received evaluation or treatment for osteoporosis after their fracture. Postfracture investigation and treatment for osteoporosis in Medicare beneficiaries is inadequate. If improved, Medicare costs could be reduced by prevention of future fractures. Future studies could determine how best to ensure this intervention occurs.

Keywords: osteoporosis, inpatient management, postfracture evaluation, post-fracture treatment

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