New results from landmark Canadian study to be presented at world's largest scientific congress on osteoporosis in Toronto

TORONTO, ONTARIO | 2006-06-01

As more than 5,000 delegates and researchers converge on Toronto to attend the 5th World Congress on Osteoporosis, a group of Canadian researchers is set to present the latest results from the Canadian Multicentre Osteoporosis Study (CaMos).

Initiated 10 years ago, CaMos is the largest ever Canadian study on osteoporosis. Researchers from nine centres across Canada have accumulated and analysed data on over 10,000 Canadian women and men to obtain important missing information on the state of osteoporosis in Canada.

During the next five days, CaMos researchers will make seven presentations based on CaMos data. Results unveiled will shed new light on issues including:

Regional disparities in the prevalence of osteoporosis in Canada;

Prevalence of fragility fracture in women and men;

Treatment care gap in men and women who have experienced a fragility fracture;

Treatment care gap in men and women who have been told they have osteoporosis;

Calcium and vitamin D intake.

Prior to CaMos, Canadian researchers, governments and other stakeholders had to rely on studies from the United States and Europe to estimate the prevalence and socio-economic impact of the disease in Canada. CaMos was specifically designed to provide unbiased and reliable statistics on osteoporosis in Canada to develop the appropriate tools to fight this terrible disease, said Dr. David Goltzman, Principal Investigator of CaMos and Professor of Medicine at McGill University in Montreal.

So far, CaMos researchers have published or presented more than 80 articles, abstracts and posters based on data collected over the last 10 years. Some key study findings include:

In Canada, 15 per cent of women and five per cent of men have osteoporosis;

One million Canadians 50 years and older have osteoporosis and are at increased risk to fracture;

There are significant regional variations in bone mineral density and fracture rates. Causes for those regional disparities have yet to be determined;

Only a relatively small proportion of those with osteoporosis are diagnosed and treated; especially among men;

Each year, approximately 2.1 per cent of women and 0.85 per cent of men sustain an osteoporotic fracture;

Peak bone mass is reached some time before age 25. Bone loss occurs relatively slowly for the next 20 years. In women, bone loss dramatically accelerates after age 45;

In pilot study on vitamin D completed among a small number of CaMos participants in Calgary, it was shown that a substantial number of patients have vitamin D deficiency.

CaMos provides us with a strong foundation to build an osteoporosis prevention and treatment plan for all Canadians, said Karen Ormerod, President and CEO, Osteoporosis Canada. With the information available through this invaluable research, we will be better equipped to make evidence-based decisions on the best course to follow to tackle this disease.

Looking ahead

CaMos researchers have identified a series of additional objectives they want to accomplish over the next few years. The cornerstone of this new phase will be to continue to follow study participants. Some of the objectives are as follows:

Establishment of the age of onset and rate of age dependent bone loss in women and men;

Identification of risk factors for age-dependent bone loss and low-trauma fractures;

Assessment of the impact of osteoporosis and fracture on health status and estimate its economic consequences;

Assessment of bone ultrasound as a predictor of fracture risk;

Identify the environmental, endocrine, and genetic determinants of age-dependent bone loss;

Assess the extent of vitamin D insufficiency, including its geographic & seasonal variability, and determine its relationship to peak bone mass, bone mineral density and fracture risk.


CaMos was made possible through the support of a variety of government agencies, charitable organizations and industry. CaMos researchers want to acknowledge the support of:

Health Canada

Canadian Institutes of Health Research

The MRC/Rx&D Health Program

The Arthritis Society

Osteoporosis Canada

Dairy Farmers of Canada

Eli Lilly Canada


Merck Frosst Canada

Novartis Pharmaceuticals Canada


Procter and Gamble Pharmaceuticals



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