Background The FRAX tool, that calculates the 10 years probability of having a fracture, has been recently developed by the World Health Organization (WHO) to improve the sensitivity of the bone mineral density (BMD) measure and thus to enable an earlier identification of patients at high risk of fracture. Little is known about the perception and knowledge that GPs have about this tool in their daily practice.
Methods A survey has been conducted as part of a screening campaign for various diseases launched by the Province of Liège in Belgium. The primary objective of the present study was to assess the perception and the knowledge of the FRAX tool by GPs. The secondary objective was to assess the impact of an information brochure, about the FRAX tool, created by the University of Liège in collaboration with the Province of Liège, on these outcomes. The survey was sent to a sample of 700 GPs after only half of them had received the information brochure.
Results The survey results show that, out of the 193 doctors who responded to the survey, one third know the FRAX tool but less than 20% use it in their daily clinical practice. In addition, the survey highlights a lack of sufficient knowledge of the FRAX algorithm by medical doctors who know but do not use the FRAX tool. Among those who use it, the FRAX tool is largely seen as a complementary but not as an essential tool in the diagnosis or in the management of osteoporosis. It appears that the brochure could improve the knowledge of the FRAX tool but it would not be more efficient on its use in daily practice than the other sources of information (e.g. medical representative, scientific conferences, scientific journals).
Conclusions To inform medical doctors about the FRAX tool is essential to expect it to be used in daily practice. This survey shows that even if an information brochure has a significant and positive effect on the knowledge of the FRAX tool, other sources of information seem necessary to promote its effective use.
Disclosure of Interest None Declared