Osteoporosis is a condition in which bones deteriorate to a point where they are brittle, thin, and can break easily. These bone fractures can be complex in nature and quite painful. This condition primarily affects women from middle to old age, but can develop in younger patients, too. Risk factors include:
While osteoporosis is not typically identified until a patient experiences a trauma such as a broken bone or fracture, several symptoms are available to identify possible links to the condition. Warning signs of osteoporosis include:
After menopause, women add to their risk of osteoporosis due to the changes in the body’s cell reproduction. Additionally, heredity is a cause of the disease including history of mother’s family, coming from a family with thin frames, and is more concentrated in Asian and Caucasian women.
Osteoporosis is common to women with low body weight or small frames. This would include teenage and young women who do not have a sufficient or varied diet and do not exercise. This creates the possibility of reduced or eliminated menstrual periods. Known as amenorrhea, lack of regular periods can result in diminished estrogen levels in the body, mimicking the effects of menopause.
The effects of menopause are a leading cause of osteoporosis in older females, and young women are not immune to these effects. Additionally, diets low in calcium have been directly related to bone density and strength. Women who are involved in heavy exercise but need to maintain a small figure such as dancers or runners can be at risk for amenorrhea and thus are candidates for osteoporosis.
Treatment of osteoporosis includes prescription of weight bearing exercise, supplements, and medications to address hormone issues and slow bone loss. Dr. Boyd will help you find the best treatment plan for your bone health and your future.
Feel free to email us regarding any scheduling or general questions!