The clinically important outcome of osteoporosis, fragility fractures, consumes vast health and social care resources. The number of incident fractures in 2025, taking into account demographic projections, has been estimated at 682,000. This represents an increase of 146,000 fractures. Hip, clinical vertebral (spine), forearm and other fractures were estimated to increase by 23,000, 18,000, 15,900 and 89,300 (Svedbom 2013). Moreover, people with one or more long-term conditions, such as osteoporosis, account for around 70% of all hospital admissions and 70% of total NHS spending (Department of Health 2012).
“In the UK, an estimated 500,000 new fragility fractures arise each year, comprising approximately 79,000 hip fractures, 66,000 vertebral fractures, 69,000 forearm fractures and 322,000 other fractures” (Svedbom 2013)
The National Hip Fracture Database annual report (2016) states that hip fractures take up £1.5 million worth of bed days (England, Wales and Northern Ireland only). It is estimated that the cost to hospital services of incidence hip fracture is £1.13 billion (Impact of hip fracture on hospital care costs: a population-based study, by Leal et al).
"1 in 4 people (28.7%) die within a year of suffering a hip fracture” (Neuburger J, et al 2015)
There are currently 66,000 vertebral fractures each year and these are often undiagnosed. Vertebral Fractures are the most common osteoporotic fracture. Studies suggest that 12% of older women have vertebral deformities, the majority of which will be osteoporotic in origin - increasing with age to 20% (women over 80 years of age). The impacts of vertebral compression fractures are significant, causing chronic back pain, limitation of activity and impaired quality of life. 58% of people who have experienced spinal fractures are in long-term pain which they don't think will ever go away (National Osteoporosis Society Life with Osteoporosis, the Untold Story).
“50-70% of vertebral fractures are undiagnosed." (NICE TA161 2008)