Osteoporosis - Causes, Symptoms and Treatment
Basically, osteoporosis means porous bones. In the Greek it translates as "passages through bones." (This makes perfect sense if you look at the images of osteoporotic bone as opposed to normal bone.) Osteoporosis is a silent disease in that there is no physical sensation associated with it. Some people experience back, neck, or joint pain with fractures, but most do not. Even so, Americans experience 1.5 million osteoporotic fractures per year.
Causes of Osteoporosis
Causes of osteoporosis are heredity and lifestyle. Whites and Asians, tall and thin women and those with a history of osteoporosis are those at the highest risk of getting osteoporosis. The behavioral causes of increasing the risk of osteoporosis are smoking, alcohol abuse, prolonged inactivity and a diet low in calcium. There are also some diseases that are associated with aging that cause osteoporosis, which include kidney failure, liver disease, cancers, Paget's disease, endocrine or glandular diseases, gonadal failure and rheumatoid arthritis. There are some medications like steroids, seizure drugs, thyroid hormone and blood thinners that are also found to cause osteoporosis.
Symptoms of Osteoporosis
In the beginning of the disease no symptoms of the disease are seen because osteoporosis doesn't cause symptoms unless bone fractures. Some osteoporosis fractures may escape detection until years later. Patient may not be aware of the disease until they experience painful fracture. Typical osteoporosis fractures occur in hip, vertebral column and wrist. These types of fractures can cause acute radiculopathic pains in the back. Multiple vertebral fractures can cause loss of height and defect in posture.
Back pain, which can be severe if you have a fractured or collapsed vertebra.
Loss of height over time, with an accompanying stooped posture.