Digital health interventions for osteoporosis and post-fragility fracture care

Amit Gupta, Christina Maslen, Madhavi Vindlacheruvu, Richard L. Abel, Pinaki Bhattacharya, Paul A. Bromiley, Emma M. Clark, Juliet E. Compston, Nicola Crabtree, Jennifer S. Gregory, Eleni P. Kariki, Nicholas C. Harvey, Eugene McCloskey, Kate A. Ward, Kenneth E.S. Poole

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The growing burden from osteoporosis and fragility fractures highlights a need to improve osteoporosis management across healthcare systems. Sub-optimal management of osteoporosis is an area suitable for digital health interventions. While fracture liaison services (FLSs) are proven to greatly improve care for people with osteoporosis, such services might benefit from technologies that enhance automation. The term ?Digital Health? covers a variety of different tools including clinical decision support systems, electronic medical record tools, patient decision aids, patient apps, education tools, and novel artificial intelligence (AI) algorithms. Within the scope of this review are AI solutions that use algorithms within health system registries to target interventions. Clinician-targeted, patient-targeted, or system-targeted digital health interventions could be used to improve management and prevent fragility fractures. This review was commissioned by The Royal Osteoporosis Society and Bone Research Academy during the production of the 2020 Research Roadmap (, with the intention of identifying gaps where targeted research funding could lead to improved patient health. We explore potential uses of digital technology in the general management of osteoporosis. Evidence suggests that digital technologies can support multidisciplinary teams to provide the best possible patient care based on current evidence and to support patients in self-management. However, robust randomised controlled studies are still needed to assess the effectiveness and cost-effectiveness of these technologies.
Original languageEnglish
Number of pages12
JournalTherapeutic advances in musculoskeletal disease
Early online date28 Mar 2022
Publication statusPublished - 2022

Bibliographical note

This Rapid Evidence Review was commissioned by the Technology Working Group of the Royal Osteoporosis Society Osteoporosis and Bone Research Academy, to inform the Society’s 2020 Research Road Map and Cure Strategy ( CM (Health Evidence Matters Ltd) wrote the full review, which was summarised for scientific publication by AG and KESP. The authors are grateful to Dr Caroline Sangan, Dr Belinda Thompson and Mrs Francesca Thompson for their assistance in convening the Working Group whose scientific membership comprises: KESP (Chair), EMC (Vice-Chair), RLA, PB, PAB, NC, JSG, NCH, EPK, KAW, and JEC (as Academy Chair). The authors are especially grateful for the contributions of the Patient Advocate Members of the Working Group; Ms Lois Ainger, Mrs Mary Bishop, Mr Nic Vine, and Mrs Karen Whitehead MBE.
The authors disclosed receipt of the following financial support for the research, authorship and/or publication of this article: The Royal Osteoporsosis Society funded the original Rapid Evidence Reivew by CM. KESP acknowledges the support of the Cambridge NIHR Biomedical Research Centre.


  • digital health
  • osteoporosis
  • fracture
  • bone density


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