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Osteoporosis - symptoms and causes

Osteoporosis - symptoms and causes

Kinga Dziwisz (MPharm)

Osteoporosis is a disease affecting mainly the elderly. What are its causes and symptoms?

Osteoporosis
A progressive disease, gradually spreading to more and more areas of the body. Causes the a gradual loss of bone density. Results in the formation of "pores" in the structure of bones, which weaken them and increase susceptibility to fractures.

Osteoporosis – symptoms
Unfortunately, at the beginning you may not see any symptoms of osteoporosis. Only after some time, when the disease reaches a certain stage, alarming symptoms will appear. The most typical symptoms include pain of longer bones, mainly as a result of strain. Furthermore, fractures of vertebrae may occur, which can lead to growth reduction. The so called stooped back, professionally defined as excessive kyphosis, is also characteristic. Another symptom which alerts one to the development of osteoporosis is the increased fragility of bones, namely more frequent fractures, which can happen even in seemingly normal situations.

Osteoporosis – causes
The causes of osteoporosis include mainly old age. The older you are, the more likely it is that osteoporosis is developing in your body. Hormonal disorders related to menopause and, to be more precise, the decrease in the amount of a female hormone – estrogen, is considered to be another cause of osteoporosis. A similar dependence is observed in the case of men, whose amount of produced testosterone decreases after andropause. Currently, the causes of osteoporosis also include mucoviscidosis.

Additionally, there are so-called risk factors, namely factors that increase the probability of osteoporosis. They include genetic conditions (which are beyond your control), long period of being immobile, a deficiency of vitamin D, protein and calcium, using stimulants, such as alcohol or tobacco, a slim body frame and some medical conditions (among others, diabetes and arthritis).
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