“In fact, a woman can lose up to 20% of her bone density
during the five – seven years
following menopause”.1

Umbrella
What may the Osteoporosis Umbrella include?

Depending on the Source (DotS) this Umbrella may include:

  • Low Bone Density/Mass
  • Osteoporosis
  • Porous Bones

Osteopenia

What is osteopenia?

DotS the definition of osteopenia may vary. The (United States National Institutes of Health) NIH Osteoporosis and Related Bone Diseases National Resource Center’s definition is:

“Osteopenia. Low bone mass”.2

Osteoporosis

What is osteoporosis?

DotS the definition of osteoporosis may vary. The International Osteoporosis Foundation’s (IOF) definition is:

“Osteoporosis literally means ‘porous bone’. It is a condition where bones become thin and lose their strength, as they become less dense and their quality is reduced. This can lead to broken bones, which cause pain, disability, and make everyday activities extremely difficult”.3

Women

Why are women more likely to get osteoporosis than men?

In What Women Need To Know the (United States) Bone Health & Osteoporosis Foundation (BHOF) note:

“There are multiple reasons why women are more likely to get osteoporosis than men, including:

  • Women tend to have smaller, thinner bones than men
  • Estrogen, a hormone in women that protects bones, decreases sharply when women reach menopause, which can cause bone loss. This is why the chance of developing osteoporosis increases as women reach menopause”.4

Menopause

Is there an association between menopause and bone loss?

In What Women Need To Know: Menopause: A Time for Action the BHOF elaborate on:

National Osteoporosis Month May 2020

“When a woman reaches menopause, her estrogen levels drop and can lead to bone loss. For some women, this bone loss is rapid and severe.

Two major factors that affect your chance of getting osteoporosis are:

  • The amount of bone you have when you reach menopause. The greater your bone density is to begin with, the lower your chance of developing osteoporosis. If you had low peak bone mass or other risk factors that caused you to lose bone, your chance of getting osteoporosis is greater.
  • How fast you lose bone after you reach menopause. For some women, bone loss happens faster than for others. In fact, a woman can lose up to 20% of her bone density during the five – seven years following menopause. If you lose bone quickly, you have a greater chance of developing osteoporosis”.5

The Australasian Menopause Society note:

“The female sex hormone oestrogen plays an important role in maintaining bone strength. After menopause oestrogen levels drop and this may result in increased bone loss. The average woman loses up to 10 per cent of her bone mass in the first five years after menopause”.6

The (Australian) Jean Hailes for Women’s Health (JH) also note:

  • “When women go through menopause, there is a rapid loss of bone because of decreased oestrogen and this process may last from 4-8 years after menopause”.7

The JH also add:

  • “After this period of time the rate of bone loss is reduced and stabilises”.8

Common or Not

How common is osteoporosis?

In Epidemiology of Osteoporosis and Fragility Fractures the IOF elaborate on 2008 information:

  • “Using the WHO definition of osteoporosis, the disease affects approximately 6.3% of men over the age of 50 and 21.2% of women over the same age range globally. Based on the world population of men and women, this suggests that approximately 500 million men and women worldwide may be affected”.9

In the United States, according to the BHOF:

“About 54 million Americans have osteoporosis and low bone mass, placing them at increased risk for osteoporosis. Studies suggest that approximately one in two women and up to one in four men age 50 and older will break a bone due to osteoporosis”.10

In the United Kingdom (UK), according to the Royal Osteoporosis Society:

“Over three million people in the UK are living with osteoporosis”.11

Women

How many women have osteoporosis?

In the United States, the BHOF explain:

Osteoporosis

  • “Of the estimated 10 million Americans with osteoporosis, about eight million or 80% are women”.12

Silent Disease

Why is osteoporosis called the ‘silent disease’?

In About Osteoporosis the IOF explain:

“Osteoporosis is often called the ‘silent disease’ because most people don’t know they have osteoporosis until they suffer a broken bone from a minor fall or bump – something that would not normally have caused such a drastic injury. In fact, even after breaking a bone, around 80% of patients are still not diagnosed and treated for osteoporosis, the underlying disease which has caused the fracture”.13

In What Is Osteoporosis and What Causes It? Osteoporosis Can Sneak Up on You the BHOF also note:

“Osteoporosis is often called a silent disease because one can’t feel bones weakening. Breaking a bone is often the first sign of osteoporosis or a patient may notice that he or she is getting shorter or their upper back is curving forward. If you are experiencing height loss or your spine is curving, be sure to consult your doctor or healthcare professional immediately”.14

Diagnosis

How is osteoporosis diagnosed?

In Osteoporosis Overview: Causes of Osteoporosis the NIH Osteoporosis and Related Bone Diseases National Resource Center explain:

“Doctors usually diagnose osteoporosis during routine screening for the disease. The U.S. Preventive Services Task Force recommends screening for:

  • Women over age 65
  • Women of any age who have factors that increase the chance of developing osteoporosis”.15

Prevention

How may osteoporosis be prevented?

The BHOF note:

“People used to think that osteoporosis was an inevitable part of aging. Today we know a lot more about how to prevent, detect, and treat the disease. You are never too young or old to take care of your bones. Good lifestyle habits can help you protect your bones and decrease your chance of getting osteoporosis. And, if your healthcare provider hasn’t talked to you about your bone health, it’s time for you to bring it up!”16

Risk Factors

How may we become aware of any potential risk factors?

In About Osteoporosis: Have Risk Factors? Talk To Your Doctor, Ask for Testing the IOF note:

“To become aware of any potential risk factors, take the IOF Osteoporosis Risk Check.

Osteoporosis is often called a silent disease because one can’t feel bones weakening. Breaking a bone is often the first sign of osteoporosis or a patient may notice that he or she is getting shorter or their upper back is curving forward. If you are experiencing height loss or your spine is curving, be sure to consult your doctor or healthcare professional immediately”.17

Health Care Provider

What if I think I have osteoporosis?

If you think you have osteoporosis, it may be in your best interest to choose to talk to your health care provider about this.

In Exercise for Your Bone Health: A Complete Osteoporosis Program the NIH Osteoporosis and Related Bone Diseases National Resource Center explain:

“Remember, exercise is only one part of an osteoporosis prevention or treatment program. Like a diet rich in calcium and vitamin D, exercise helps strengthen bones at any age. But proper exercise and diet may not be enough to stop bone loss caused by medical conditions, menopause, or lifestyle choices such as tobacco use and excessive alcohol consumption. It is important to speak with your doctor about your bone health. Discuss whether you might be a candidate for a bone mineral density test. If you are diagnosed with low bone mass, ask what medications might help keep your bones strong”.18

Health Topics A-Z

Where may I find Health Topics related to Osteoporosis?

In Health Topics A-Z you may find:

Links

Where may I find Links related to Osteoporosis?

Your Country may have Links similar to:

Sources

Where may I find the Sources quoted?

You may find the Sources quoted at:

Sources

  1. What Women Need To Know: Menopause: A Time for Action. Bone Health & Osteoporosis Foundation https://www.nof.org/prevention/general-facts/what-women-need-to-know/ Accessed: 17 October 2022
  2. Osteopenia. NIH Osteoporosis and Related Bone Diseases National Resource Center https://www.bones.nih.gov/about/glossary/osteopenia Accessed: 17 October 2022
  3. About Osteoporosis. International Osteoporosis Foundation https://www.osteoporosis.foundation/patients/about-osteoporosis Accessed: 17 October 2022
  4. What Women Need To Know. Bone Health & Osteoporosis Foundation https://www.nof.org/preventing-fractures/general-facts/what-women-need-to-know/ Accessed: 17 October 2022
  5. What Women Need To Know: Menopause: A Time for Action. Bone Health & Osteoporosis Foundation https://www.nof.org/preventing-fractures/general-facts/what-women-need-to-know/ Accessed: 17 October 2022
  6. Osteoporosis. Content Updated September 2018. Australasian Menopause Society https://www.menopause.org.au/hp/information-sheets/622-osteoporosis Accessed: 17 October 2022
  7. Calcium: Recommended Daily Calcium Intake. Last Updated: 16 January 2020 | Last Reviewed: 01 December 2013. Jean Hailes for Women’s Health https://jeanhailes.org.au/health-a-z/bone-health/calcium/ Accessed: 17 October 2022
  8. Calcium: Recommended Daily Calcium Intake. Last Updated: 16 January 2020  | Last Reviewed: 01 December 2013. Jean Hailes for Women’s Health https://jeanhailes.org.au/health-a-z/bone-health/calcium/ Accessed: 17 October 2022
  9. Epidemiology of Osteoporosis and Fragility Fractures. International Osteoporosis Foundation https://www.osteoporosis.foundation/facts-statistics/epidemiology-of-osteoporosis-and-fragility-fractures Accessed: 17 October 2022
  10. What Is Osteoporosis and What Causes It? Osteoporosis Is Common. Bone Health & Osteoporosis Foundation https://www.bonehealthandosteoporosis.org/patients/what-is-osteoporosis/ Accessed: 17 October 2022
  11. Osteoporosis and Bone Health. Royal Osteoporosis Society https://theros.org.uk/ Accessed: 17 October 2022
  12. What Women Need To Know. Bone Health & Osteoporosis Foundation https://www.nof.org/prevention/general-facts/what-women-need-to-know/ Accessed: 17 October 2022
  13. About Osteoporosis. International Osteoporosis Foundation https://www.osteoporosis.foundation/patients/about-osteoporosis Accessed: 17 October 2022
  14. What Is Osteoporosis and What Causes It? Osteoporosis Can Sneak Up on You. National Osteoporosis Foundation https://www.nof.org/patients/what-is-osteoporosis/ Accessed: 17 October 2022
  15. Osteoporosis Overview: Causes of Osteoporosis. Last Reviewed: October 2019. NIH Osteoporosis and Related Bone Diseases National Resource Center https://www.bones.nih.gov/health-info/bone/osteoporosis/overview Accessed: 17 October 2022
  16. What Women Need To Know: Now the Good News. Bone Health & Osteoporosis Foundation https://www.nof.org/prevention/general-facts/what-women-need-to-know/ Accessed: 17 October 2022
  17. About Osteoporosis: Have Risk Factors? Talk To Your Doctor, Ask for Testing International Osteoporosis Foundation http://worldosteoporosisday.org/about-osteoporosis Accessed: 17 October 2022
  18. Exercise for Your Bone Health: A Complete Osteoporosis Program. Last Reviewed: October 2018. NIH Osteoporosis and Related Bone Diseases National Resource Center https://www.niams.nih.gov/Health_Info/Bone/Bone_Health/Exercise/default.asp Accessed: 17 October 2022
Topic Last Updated: 17 October 2022 – Topic Last Reviewed: 17 October 2022

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