Knowledge, awareness, and preventive behaviors toward osteoporosis among a sample of premenopausal women in Erbil city, Iraq


Background and objective: Osteoporosis is among the top five conditions causing disability and prolonged hospital stay; however, it is still underestimated worldwide, especially in developing countries. Therefore, this study aimed to determine the knowledge, attitude, and preventive practice in Erbil city toward this global disease.Methods: A cross-sectional study was conducted among 395 premenopausal women aged ≥25 years and ≤ 49 years old, who were recruited by simple random sampling throughout three months from the first of October to December 2015. A questionnaire was completed through a direct interview, which consisted of four parts, including questions about knowledge, attitude, practice, and demographic questions. The statistical package for the social sciences was used for data analysis.Results: The mean age of the participants was 35 ± 8.24 years. Almost half of them did not hear about osteoporosis before. The identification of risk factors by participants was poor. Out of 395 of the participants, 92.9% had no knowledge about the diagnosis of this disease. Approximately half of the participants believed that there is no way to prevent osteoporosis. Regarding practice scoring to prevent the disease, the total score (mean) was 2.9 out of a maximum of 12, which is very low, especially among females aged 25-29 years.Conclusion: The majority of premenopausal women in Erbil city had little knowledge of osteoporosis, however unaware of osteoporosis risk factors and poor preventive practice regarding prevention.