Osteoporosis is a bone disease that affects over 30,000 people in Canada each year. The disease causes bones to be more fragile and brittle, which is because Osteoporosis makes the bones more porous.
Often known as “the silent thief”, the disease causes bone mass to be lost without any symptoms. Osteoporosis shouldn’t be confused with Osteoarthritis, the two are very different. Osteoarthritis only affects the joints around the bones, not the bones themselves.
Stats About Osteoporosis
- 1 in 3 women and 1 in 5 men will suffer from a fracture caused by Osteoporosis in their lifetime.
- 80% of all bone fractures in people over the age of 50 are caused by Osteoporosis.
- Osteoporosis most commonly affects wrists, spines, shoulders and hips.
- Fractures from Osteoporosis are more common than stroke, breast cancer and heart attack combined.
- 1 in 3 hip fracture patients will re-fracture in one year.
Around the age of 30, men and women begin to naturally lose bone density, however women will lose bone faster due to menopause. Many times, those who suffer from a bone fracture due to osteoporosis will suffer another one within 1-5 years. Risk factors for osteoporosis include: age, sex, other fractures, use of certain glucocorticoid drugs, medical conditions affecting nutrition absorption, and other health factors.
Bone Mineral Densitometry
Hundreds of thousands of Canadians needlessly suffer fractures from Osteoporosis each year because the condition goes undiagnosed and untreated. Bone Mineral Densitometry is your best tool to use for identifying potential Osteoporosis.
BMD is the standard method for measuring bone density and strength. Using Dual X-ray Absorptiometry (DXA), this method of medical imaging can detect bone loss very effectively.
As Osteoporosis can develop at any time and any age, it’s important to keep the key triggers in mind so you can get a BMD Test:
- Minor falls or bumps in previously fractured areas.
- Oral steroids, like Prednisone, taken over 3 months.
- Early menopause before the age of 45.
- Spine fractures or low bone density identified with X-rays.
- Certain bone diseases, such as arthritis, Crohns, Celiac disease, Hyperparathroidism, overactive Thyroid, or liver/ kidney disease.
- Low body weight.
Osteoporosis is best prevented by a proper diet early on in life, however by adjusting your diet later on, you can reduce your chances of suffering fractures. Food items like milk, yogurt, fresh fruit and vegetables will give your bones the boost in calcium they need. Protein is also an important nutrient to bones, so 2 -3 servings of meat a day are recommended. These meats include beef, pork, poultry and fish. Some alternatives to still get the required protein your bones need are beans, lentils, tofu, egg whites and peanuts. Calcium supplements can also be taken.
If you feel that you’re at risk of a bone fracture caused by Osteoporosis, or wish to have a Bone Mineral Densitometry test done in the near future, contact Canada Diagnostic Centres now!