Osteoporosis causes bones to lose calcium and become more porous, thinner, and weaker. “Dowager’s hump,” a curving of the spine most often seen in older women, is caused by osteoporosis.
Osteoporosis is silent and results, lately, in fracture. Of particular concern, hip fracture and vertebral compression fractures do result in significant mortality and morbidity. Around the world, 1 in 3 women and 1 in 5 men are at risk of an osteoporotic fracture. As underlined by the International Osteoporosis Fundation, an osteoporotic fracture is estimated to occur every 3 seconds. The likelihood of these fractures occurring, particularly at the hip and spine, increases with age in both women and men.
Vertebral compression fracture is crumbling or collapse of small sections of the bones of the spine that occurs without any obvious cause, such as an injury. More of the crumbling happens in the front of the bone than the back, causing the spine to bend forward. The related symptoms are absent in 50% of the cases. If present, it is usually a sudden and acute pain in the lower back or mid-back that may feel like a muscle spasm. It usually occurs during routine chores such as making a bed, opening a door, or picking something up from the floor. It is thus very common to have a compression fracture without knowing it. Ultimately, compression fractures may be recognize because you to become shorter by as much as several centimetres.
Vertebral fractures can result in serious consequences, including loss of height, intense back pain and deformity. About 20% of women have a compression fracture of the spine by age 70.
On the other hand, hip fracture occurs after small falls from your height, during walking as well as during simple housekeeping tasks. It often requires surgery and may result in long-term loss of independence or death.
Osteoporosis develops over a period of years. Therefore, it is of upmost priority to perform a specialized check-up, usually at time of menopause in women or after the age of 45 years old in men in order to identify early in time the occurrence of osteoporosis because treatment does exist and fractures can be prevented.
Our proposal includes, in the following sequence listed below:
Depending on this evaluation, additional investigations or specialized medical consultation may be suggested / required such as spine X-Ray, MRI or vertebroplasty, gynaecologist, urologist or endocrinologist medical consultation.