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Release: May 15, 2000

UI Health Care specialist to lead online chat on osteoporosis prevention

IOWA CITY, Iowa -- Susan R. Johnson, M.D., University of Iowa professor of obstetrics and gynecology and a specialist with UI Health Care, will lead an hour-long, online question-and-answer discussion on osteoporosis prevention with a nationwide audience from 9 to 10 a.m. Tuesday, May 16.

The online chat will be hosted by and can be accessed by entering through the home page under "Upcoming Events."

Osteoporosis is the most common type of metabolic bone disease in the U.S. It occurs when the body fails to form enough new bone, when too much old bone is reabsorbed by the body, or both. Researchers estimate that about 23 percent of American women age 50 and older have osteoporosis. Preventative measures can include dietary intake of calcium, which is essential for bone formation and maintenance, and vitamin D, which aids in the absorption of calcium. Regular exercise, which can reduce the likelihood of bone fractures, also is important.

Johnson is also associate dean for faculty affairs in the UI College of Medicine. After receiving her medical degree from the UI College of Medicine, she completed a residency in obstetrics and gynecology at the UI Hospitals and Clinics. She joined the UI faculty in 1980.

Johnson is an examiner for the American Board of Obstetrics and Gynecology, a member of the National Board of Medical Examiners, and has served on the editorial board of the major journal in her field, Obstetrics and Gynecology. Her clinical and research interests are in the areas of premenstrual syndrome and menopausal health issues, particularly the use of hormones and other drugs for prevention in postmenopausal women.

A calendar of other upcoming chats by UI Health Care professionals and dialogue from past chats can be accessed by logging on to and clicking on the logo at the bottom of the page.

UI Health Care's partnership with is part of an increasing trend in health care toward enhancing consumer services through the Internet. According to recent statistics compiled by Cyber Dialogue, a New York firm that tracks Internet commerce, there are approximately 22 million World Wide Web users seeking health information over the Internet. Cyber Dialogue projects that number to increase to 33 million over the next year.

University of Iowa Health Care describes the partnership between the UI College of Medicine and the UI Hospitals and Clinics and the patient care, medical education and research programs and services they provide.