In the past, healthcare providers knew to treat people with osteoporosis, but were sometimes uncertain about when to treat patients with osteopenia. The absolute fracture risk method makes it easier for healthcare providers and their patients with osteopenia to decide when an osteoporosis medication is necessary. This method helps make sure that people with the greatest chance of breaking a bone get treated.
Healthcare providers can get a patient’s absolute fracture risk by using a special web-based tool on a computer in their office. The healthcare provider enters a patient’s hip T-score and certain risk factors for osteoporosis. The tool predicts the patient’s absolute fracture risk. Soon, some central DXA machines will be able to provide this information.