Empirically Based Composite Fracture Prediction Model From the Global Longitudinal Study of Osteoporosis in Postmenopausal Women (GLOW) Journal Articles uri icon

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  • Context: Several fracture prediction models that combine fractures at different sites into a composite outcome are in current use. However, to the extent individual fracture sites have differing risk factor profiles, model discrimination is impaired. Objective: The objective of the study was to improve model discrimination by developing a 5-year composite fracture prediction model for fracture sites that display similar risk profiles. Design: This was a prospective, observational cohort study. Setting: The study was conducted at primary care practices in 10 countries. Patients: Women aged 55 years or older participated in the study. Intervention: Self-administered questionnaires collected data on patient characteristics, fracture risk factors, and previous fractures. Main Outcome Measure: The main outcome is time to first clinical fracture of hip, pelvis, upper leg, clavicle, or spine, each of which exhibits a strong association with advanced age. Results: Of four composite fracture models considered, model discrimination (c index) is highest for an age-related fracture model (c index of 0.75, 47 066 women), and lowest for Fracture Risk Assessment Tool (FRAX) major fracture and a 10-site model (c indices of 0.67 and 0.65). The unadjusted increase in fracture risk for an additional 10 years of age ranges from 80% to 180% for the individual bones in the age-associated model. Five other fracture sites not considered for the age-associated model (upper arm/shoulder, rib, wrist, lower leg, and ankle) have age associations for an additional 10 years of age from a 10% decrease to a 60% increase. Conclusions: After examining results for 10 different bone fracture sites, advanced age appeared the single best possibility for uniting several different sites, resulting in an empirically based composite fracture risk model.


  • FitzGerald, Gordon
  • Compston, Juliet E
  • Chapurlat, Roland D
  • Pfeilschifter, Johannes
  • Cooper, Cyrus
  • Hosmer, David W
  • Adachi, Jonathan Derrick
  • Anderson, Frederick A
  • Díez-Pérez, Adolfo
  • Greenspan, Susan L
  • Netelenbos, J Coen
  • Nieves, Jeri W
  • Rossini, Maurizio
  • Watts, Nelson B
  • Hooven, Frederick H
  • LaCroix, Andrea Z
  • March, Lyn
  • Roux, Christian
  • Saag, Kenneth G
  • Siris, Ethel S
  • Silverman, Stuart
  • Gehlbach, Stephen H

publication date

  • March 1, 2014