An Ultimate Guide - Causes, Symptoms, and Treatment of Osteoporosis

by Dr. Thirumalesh K Reddy

What is Osteoporosis?

Osteoporosis is a bone disease where you suffer too much breaking of your bones, lesser creation of new bones, or both. This may result in the weakening of bones.

Osteoporosis means ‘porous bone.’. If you watch a healthy bone under a microscope, you will see a honeycomb. When you have osteoporosis, the holes and the spaces in the honeycomb are much larger than what you will see in healthy bones.

Osteoporosis affects both men and women. White and Asian women are more prone to Osteoporosis, especially women after menopause.

If you wish to know how incredible are your bones, and whether there are any chances of you getting Osteoporosis, you can go for a DEXA scan. It is an imaging test that measures your bone density. The result of the DEXA scan determines whether you have Osteoporosis or whether you are at the risk of getting it.

Please Note that - T Score of 2.5 or below indicates that the patient may get Osteoporosis

What are the Symptoms of Osteoporosis?

In the initial stage, there are no signs and symptoms. But, as Osteoporosis starts weakening your bones, you might start seeing the following symptoms.

  • You start suffering from back pain, possibly caused by the fractured bone.
  • You will begin to lose height over a while.
  • You will have a stooped posture due to the bending of your spine.
  • You will see the breaking of bones much often then.

(We recommend you to consult the best Orthopedic doctor in Bangalore or visit an Orthopedic Hospital near you if you are facing severe issues)

What are the stages of Osteoporosis?

Generally, a patient who has Osteoporosis goes through these four stages, which, when identified, can be solved.

  • Stage 1 of Osteoporosis - This is the stage where your bone density is reached at its peak. You might be in the age group of 25 to 30. At this stage, the rate at which your bones are formed and deposited equals the rate you lose them. During this stage, Osteoporosis begins, and there are hardly any visible symptoms.
  • Stage 2 of Osteoporosis - A patient reaches this stage in an age group of 30-35. At this stage, bone formation & deposition is slower than the breaking of bones. If you plan to take a DEXA test, you might see low BMD. During this second stage of Osteoporosis, you might notice,
    • Receding Gums
    • Brittle Nails
    • Poor grip strength
  • Stage 3 of Osteoporosis - This stage occurs when you are in the age group of 45 to 55. Patients, especially women post-menopause, suffer from fragile bones. Just bending or tripping forward can lead to the breaking of bones at this stage. In the majority of cases, the symptoms start appearing at this stage as it is evident. Symptoms like neck pain, fractured bones due to minor movements, heavy back pain are better visible at this stage of Osteoporosis.
  • Stage 4 of Osteoporosis - If patients are least bothered at stage 3, they quickly shift to this final stage. They suffer from much more pain than stage 3, losing height because of deformities in the spine & other areas of the body. Even patients face challenges in performing daily tasks like climbing stairs, sitting down on a chair, etc.

This leads us to a discussion, ‘Why do you suffer from conditions like Osteoporosis?’

What are the Causes of Osteoporosis?

  1. Aging is the most significant factor behind suffering from Osteoporosis. Other than that, it is more common in women post-menopause.
  2. If you have metabolic abnormalities, there are chances of you getting Osteoporosis. - If your calcium intake is poor, and you suffer from low calcium levels, Osteoporosis is often.
  3. If your body is not reacting correctly to the new bone formation, and there is a reduction in the rate of bone formation, then you may suffer from the condition.
  4. Lower levels of Estrogen/Androgen or even genetic disorders may lead you to suffer.
  5. Other complications like Bone Cancer, Thyroid problems, and overuse of corticosteroids may also result in Osteoporosis.

Additionally, we may even like you to understand the risk factors of having Osteoporosis.

What are the risk factors of Osteoporosis?

  • There are chances that you may start living a sedentary life.
  • You may lose weight.
  • There are chances in females where they have premature menopause.
  • You may suffer from medical situations like Malabsorption Syndrome, Liver Problems, Hyperthyroidism, Diabetes, Chronic Failure, Cancer, etc.

If you have Osteoporosis and are searching for a treatment that will probably help you cure it, we have made it easier for you. You may go through the list of treatments we have given here for Osteoporosis.

How to treat Osteoporosis?

We are broadly classifying the treatment of Osteoporosis into two categories.

  1. Non-operative treatments - In this category of treatment, patients have to challenge themselves to cure their Osteoporosis. They have to change their lifestyle of sitting in one place and working for longer hours, eating quality food with enough vitamins & minerals, taking proper medicines prescribed by the doctor promptly, enough calcium intake, etc.
  2. Operative treatments - There are a few conditions like Osteoporotic Vertebral Compression fracture, femoral neck fracture, and distal radius fracture, where patients will have to undergo operations, taking prior guidance from experienced orthopedics.

At times, patients feel that they should have taken some preventive measures to avoid the situation. Hence, let us now understand the steps to be taken to prevent yourself from the condition.

How can you prevent Osteoporosis from happening?

Remember, the preventive measures will support you if you take necessary action at the right time. We say,

“Right action, right time, will lead you to a healthy wellbeing.”

Measures to prevent Osteoporosis from happening

  • You can plan to have a healthy lifestyle where you take proper food (dairy products to maintain calcium levels), sleep, and proactively engage yourself in activities like exercise, yoga, etc., for the body to maintain the formation and deposition of new bones.
  • It would be best if you exposed yourself to morning sunlight for Vitamin D.
  • It would be best if you avoid smoking and drinking.
  • You may have to avoid falls.

Though a few, these preventive measures will be profitable for you in the long term. You may find it a little challenging at the start, but always see the brighter side of the future.

We, at Aster Hospitals, are fortunate enough to have a panel of physicians who are always in quest of ways to treat any medical situation, Osteoporosis, for example. Hence, if you feel that you cannot judge any medical problem or the case is going out of your hands after following the measures, you can visit our Orthopedic Hospital near you. We guarantee the top orthopedic treatment for your medical condition.

“Let us be the fighting force to treat your Osteoporosis!”