A GP guide to osteosarcopenia

With an ageing population, it is more important than ever to know how to diagnose and treat osteosarcopenia in order to offset its devastating clinical and socioeconomic consequences

Need to know:

  • Osteosarcopenia is a geriatric syndrome that increases the risk of fragility fractures and premature death.
  • The pathophysiology includes genetic, hormonal, immunological and lifestyle factors.
  • Diagnosis is made through detailed medical history, physical assessment and imaging.
  • Treatment options include high-intensity resistance exercise, sufficient nutrient intake (protein, vitamin D and calcium) and appropriate pharmacotherapy.
  • This is a relatively novel concept, and the field is evolving rapidly.

The musculoskeletal system represents more than 60% of the body mass in a young adult.

Skeletal muscle supports ambulation, glucose storage and metabolism, while bone facilitates calcium and phosphate metabolism and supports haematopoiesis.1

As endocrine organs, muscle and bone receive and secrete signals through

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