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Knowledge and understanding risk factors and preventive measures for osteoporosis in women: results of a survey in 502 women with and without a migration background

BMC Musculoskelet Disord. 2022 Aug 30;23(1):824. doi: 10.1186/s12891-022-05773-0.


BACKGROUND: Osteoporosis is a disease of the skeletal system associated with loss of bone mass and an increased risk of fractures affecting women more often than men. Identification of the knowledge about osteoporosis and its preventive methods is the backbone of any awareness program. This study investigates the knowledge with a special focus on women with and without a migration background.

METHODS: Data from systematic patient interviews based on a questionnaire were collected at three different sites in Berlin between February and June 2021. The survey included questions assessing migrant background, demographic characteristics, lifestyle habits including physical exercise and smoking, prevention by vitamin D intake and bone densitometry, and information on personal and family medical history. According to the responses, a scale was created to assess the level of knowledge of preventive osteoporosis measures. The ethic committee of the Charité, Medical faculty has approved this study. SPSS (version 24.0) was used for the statistical analyses.

RESULTS: The survey of 502 female patients revealed that 25% had low and 34% no previous knowledge of osteoporosis. Older age and a better education level correlate with a higher knowledge. Patients with gynecologic cancer are less well informed. There is a significant difference in vitamin D intake between migrant and non-migrant women (57% vs. 49%). There were no significant differences regarding the use of bone densitometry.

CONCLUSION: Knowledge of osteoporosis and the possibility of a bone densitometry as well as the implementation of preventive measures is low among women. Therefore, informing patients better should be a priority, with particular attention on the risks and needs of women with a migration background. Specific programs for women with and without migration background should be developed to increase the awareness of osteoporosis.

PMID:36042427 | DOI:10.1186/s12891-022-05773-0

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