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Summary: Despite the proven predictive ability of bone mineral density, Fracture Risk Assessment Tool ( FRAX® ), bone turnover markers, and fracture for osteoporotic fracture, their use as targets for treatment of osteoporosis is limited. Introduction: Treat-to-target is a strategy applied in several fields of medicine and has recently become an area of interest in the management of osteoporosis. Its role in this setting remains controversial. This article was prepared following a European Society for Clinical and Economic Aspects of Osteoporosis and Osteoarthritis ( ESCEO ) working group meeting convened under the auspices of the International Osteoporosis Foundation ( IOF ) to discuss the feasibility of applying such a strategy in osteoporosis in Europe. Methods: Potential targets range from the absence of an incident fracture to fixed levels of bone mineral density ( BMD ), a desired FRAX® score, a specified level of bone turnover markers or indeed changes in any one or a combination of these parameters. Results: Despite the proven predictive ability of all of these variables for fracture ( particularly BMD and FRAX ), their use as targets remains limited due to low sensitivity, the influence of confounders and current lack of evidence that targets can be consistently reached. Conclusion: ESCEO considers that it is not currently feasible to apply a treat-to-target strategy in osteoporosis, though it did identify a need to continue to improve the targeting of treatment to those at higher risk ( target-to-treat strategy ) and a number of issues for the research agenda. These include international consensus on intervention thresholds and definition of treatment failure, further exploration of the relationship between fracture and BMD, and FRAX and treatment efficacy and investigation of the potential of short-term targets to improve adherence.


Institute for Health and Ageing

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Journal Article

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