What is it
Osteoporosis is characterised by a weakening of bones such that patients
are at an increased risk of fractures (broking a bone)
Who it affects
Osteoporosis is a common disorder affecting 10 % of the general
population. It is more common in woman, Caucasians and Asians. Other
risk factors include smoking, alcohol excess and steroid use. Certain
endocrine disorders such as hypogonadism (male/female hormone
deficiency), hyperparathyroidism, hyperthyroidism, and Cushing`s
syndrome may be associated with osteoporosis.
What gland is involved
Osteoporosis is a disorder of bones. Its cause however, may arise in a
number of glands as detailed above.
Patient with osteoporosis may have no symptoms. A fracture or broken
bone as a result of osteoporosis will cause pain and affect mobility.
Osteoporosis is diagnosed using imaging techniques; commonly a bone
mineral density scan. Investigating the cause of osteoporosis is
dependent on what medical conditions are suspected, but may include
blood tests, urine tests, or various scans.
Patients with osteoporosis should avoid smoking and limit alcohol
intake. Exercise is beneficial for bone strength, but needs to be
tailored individually. Patients should always take adequate precautions
to avoid injuries that may result in fractures.
Specific treatments you may be prescribed for osteoporosis may include
vitamin D supplements, bisphosphonates or Strontium Renalate. Additional
endocrine treatments may include replacement hormones for deficiencies,
e.g. HRT in premature ovarian failure.
The outlook of osteoporosis is dependent on the cause and degree of
osteoporosis. For example, mild osteoporosis with a treatable cause,
will respond better. Newer drugs in the treatment of osteoporosis are
continually being developed.
A priority for patients with osteoporosis should be to maintain a good
quality of life. To achieve this it is important to avoid fractures and
therefore to develop safe practises when mobilising.
Dr A Qureshi
is a consultant endocrinologist and diabetologist who consults at The
Harley Street Clinic, London, UK. He specialises in disorders such as
hypothyroidism, hyperthyroidism, hyperparathyroidism, hypopituitarism,
Addison’s disease, hypertension and diabetes.
To arrange an appointment, please call:
APPOINTMENTS : ++44 (0)7733
The information contained in this website is general and not specific
endocrine or diabetes advice.
Patients should always consultant their physician or an endocrinology
specialist. For further details please read the full disclaimer.