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Prevalence of and factors associated with adopting bone health promoting behaviours among people with osteoporosis in Taiwan: a cross-sectional study

26 Sep 2017


To detect osteopenia, osteoporosis, treatments received and bone health promoting behaviours early among postmenopausal women and elderly men, and to explore the associated factors.


A community-based cross-sectional study.


Two rural townships in Yunlin County, Taiwan.


A total of 941 adults including 651 postmenopausal women and 290 elderly men aged >65 years.

Outcome measures

Bone mineral density was measured using dual-energy X-ray absorptiometry. Adults with a T-score <–1.0 for bone mineral density were classified as having osteopenia, and those with a T-score <–2.5 as having osteoporosis. The main outcome measures were prevalence of osteopenia, osteoporosis, receiving medication and bone health promoting behaviours. A logistic regression model was used to analyse the factors associated with adopting bone health promoting behaviours.


Across both genders, 63.7% of participants were identified as having osteopenia (46.9%) or osteoporosis (16.8%). A high proportion of participants reported never or seldom performing regular exercise, or having sunlight exposure, a diet containing calcium/vitamin D or taking medications/supplements for bone health. Although 34.8% reported taking supplements, 92.4% were inadequate. The logistic regression model indicated that older age (OR 1.03, 95% CI 1.01 to 1.05, p=0.006) and a high education level (OR 1.07, 95% CI 1.03 to 1.11, p<0.001) were significant factors associated with bone health promoting behaviours.


The prevalence of osteopenia and osteoporosis among postmenopausal women and elderly men is worryingly high and most of them receive inadequate treatment and perform few bone health promoting behaviours. Interventions are therefore urgently required to address the right methods for delaying osteoporosis among postmenopausal women and elderly men in rural areas.

Click here to view the full article which appeared in BMJ Open