World Osteoporosis Day, marked on October 20th each year, is a prime time to put the spotlight on osteoporosis. You can get involved and support the campaign in a number of ways.
Hold an event - share our resources
Through social media or a WOD event of your own, you can support the cause and help spread our ‘Take action for bone health’ message locally. We provide many posters and infographics (in multiple languages) which can be downloaded and displayed at your event, in your office or school.
Global patient charter
Show your commitment on this year's World Osteoporosis Day by signing the IOF Global Patient Charter. You will be joining a worldwide call for improved patient care, and helping to raise the profile of this silent disease among healthcare authorities worldwide. By voicing our concern collectively, we can all help to make fracture prevention a global health priority.
Add your voice to our global call for osteoporosis patient rights
Find a world osteoporosis day event near you
Stay tuned for news on local World Osteoporosis Day Events organized by national societies in your region.
If you are a national society or organization interested in putting on a World Osteoporosis Day event, download our toolkit and register your event here to gain visibility on our World Osteoporosis Day events map.
Interested in receiving news from the international osteoporosis foundation?
Sign up to receive our 206 newsletter with IOF news, webinars, publications, event information, and much more!
Contact your local osteoporosis society
If you have osteoporosis, contact your local osteoporosis society which can provide helpful information and support. A list of IOF member societies is available here.
What is osteoporosis?
Worldwide, one in three women and one in five men aged 50 years and over will suffer an osteoporotic fracture. Osteoporosis causes bones to become weak and fragile, so that they break easily – even as a result of a minor fall, a bump, a sneeze, or a sudden movement. Fractures caused by osteoporosis can be life-threatening and a major cause of pain and long-term disability.
The care gap
Can osteoporosis and fractures be prevented? Yes, if action is taken early!
Fractures due to osteoporosis have a devastating impact on millions of people worldwide and result in enormous socio-economic costs to society and healthcare systems. Yet, despite effective medical advances to reduce fractures, a minority of men and women receive treatment.
Only 20% of patients with osteoporotic fractures are actually diagnosed or treated for osteoporosis, the underlying disease. In 2010, in Europe alone some 12.3 million people considered to be at a high risk for osteoporotic fractures were left untreated.
The 5 steps to healthy bones and a fracture-free future
Exercise regularly - keep your bones and muscles moving
Weight-bearing, muscle-strengthening and balance-training exercises are best.
Ensure your diet is rich in bone-healthy nutrients
Calcium, vitamin D and protein are the most important for bone health. Safe exposure to sunshine will help you get enough vitamin D.
Avoid negative lifestyle habits
Maintain a healthy body weight, avoid smoking and excessive drinking.
Find out whether you have risk factors
Bring these to your doctor’s attention, especially if you’ve had a previous fracture, have a family history of osteoporosis, or take specific medications that affect bone health
5Testing & Treatment
Get tested and treated if needed
If you’re at high risk you will likely need medication and lifestyle changes to help protect yourself against fractures.
Have risk factors? talk to your doctor, ask for testing
To become aware of any potential risk factors, take the IOF Osteoporosis Risk Check.
If you are over the age of 50 and you have one or more risk factors you should discuss these with your doctor and ask for an assessment of your bone health status. Lifestyle changes may be recommended and, for those at high risk, medication may be prescribed for optimal protection against fractures.
IOF welcomes your donation
Donate now and support our mission to:
- Educate the public and medical professionals about the prevention, diagnosis and treatment of osteoporosis and musculoskeletal disorders;
- Convince policy-makers that osteoporosis and fragility fracture prevention must be prioritized in healthcare systems;
- Provide support and trustworthy information to people with osteoporosis, their families and friends - and encourage them to engage in their health care and long-term bone health.
- Organize training conferences and meetings of health professionals and scientists that focus on musculoskeletal diseases;
- Publish scientific research to advance knowledge and improve treatment and medical care.