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Maturitas. 2011 Jan;68(1):5-12. doi: 10.1016/j.maturitas.2010.08.013. Epub 2010 Oct 14.

Older men's knowledge about osteoporosis and educational interventions to increase osteoporosis knowledge in older men: a systematic review.

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  • 1The Erickson Foundation,701 Maiden Choice Lane, Catonsville, MD 21228, USA. jean.gaines@erickson.com



The prevalence of osteoporosis and low bone density in men over the age of 65 is approximately 45%. The public health response to a disease affecting almost half of a given population includes assessment of knowledge and design of educational interventions in order to improve screening and prevention. The aim of this systematic review is two fold. We aim to describe older men's knowledge about the osteoporosis disease process, risk factors, and prevention. Second, we examine educational interventions designed to increase older men's knowledge about osteoporosis.


Computerized literature searches were performed with multiple databases including Academic Search Premier, CINAHL, MEDLINE, SocINDEX, and Psychology and Behavioral Sciences Collection. Studies were considered if they included men aged 50 years or older, included a measure of osteoporosis knowledge and/or had an intervention designed to change osteoporosis knowledge and/or lifestyle risk factors for osteoporosis.


Thirteen studies were included in the review. Nine of the studies were cross-sectional studies on men's knowledge of osteoporosis. All of the studies found that men have minimal knowledge of the osteoporosis disease process, risk factors, and prevention. Four studies focused on education about osteoporosis. Educational interventions were found to increase initiation of calcium supplementation and knowledge about osteoporosis prevention.


Older men know remarkably little about the osteoporosis disease process, risk factors for the disease, or prevention. Education has the potential to improve this situation. Unfortunately, so few clinical trials have occurred that the best method for improving men's knowledge cannot be stated. Future studies examining knowledge and education of osteoporosis for men need to use validated instruments with a focus on risk factors pertinent to men.

Copyright © 2010 Elsevier Ireland Ltd. All rights reserved.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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