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Personalized fracture risk assessment: where are we at?


Expert Rev Endocrinol Metab. 2021 May 13;1-10. doi: 10.1080/17446651.2021.1924672.Online ahead of print.

Tuan V Nguyen 1 2 3

Author Information

1 Healthy Ageing Theme, Garvan Institute of Medical Research Darlinghurst Australia.

2 St Vincent's Clinical School, UNSW Sydney, Sydney Australia.

3 School of Biomedical Engineering, University of Technology Sydney Sydney Australia.


Introduction: Osteoporotic fracture imposes a significant health care burden globally. Personalized assessment of fracture risk can potentially guide treatment decisions. Over the past decade, a number of risk prediction models, including the Garvan Fracture Risk Calculator (Garvan) and FRAX®, have been developed and implemented in clinical practice. Areas covered: This article reviews recent development and validation results concerning the prognostic performance of the two tools. The main areas of review are the need for personalized fracture risk prediction, purposes of risk prediction, predictive performance in terms of discrimination and calibration, concordance between the Garvan and FRAX tools, genetic profiling for improving predictive performance, and treatment thresholds. In some validation studies, FRAX tended to underestimate fracture by as high as 50%. Studies have shown that the predicted risk from the Garvan tool is highly concordant with clinical decision. Expert opinion: Although there are some discrepancy in fracture risk prediction between Garvan and FRAX, both tools are valid and can aid patients and doctors communicate about risk and make informed decision. The ideal of personalized risk assessment for osteoporosis patients will be realized through the incorporation of genetic profiling into existing fracture risk assessment tools.