Why Should We Fear Osteoporosis

Silent disease – osteoporosis – is a serious health problem with social and psychological implications, the huge costs involved, and by their associated morbidity and mortality. Often the most obvious symptom of this disease manifestation is osteoporotic fracture. But many women have also suffered fractures without them to be evaluated as such. Currently, the risk that a woman suffering an osteoporotic fracture approaches 40% and 20% of a hip fracture victims die next year because of complications …

Osteoporosis is a skeletal disease that is characterized by decreased bone mass quantity. Loss of bone density causes changes in bone microstructure and an increased risk of fractures. After bone loss (which happens, inevitably, after age 35), bone becomes porous, brittle and fractures more easily.

Why is it called “silent disease”? Because the disease is extremely slow and can not be detected early, which occurs usually after a minor trauma (often even after a fall from his height – so called fragility fracture). Because of complications and costs involved, the disease is a very serious public health problem.

“We are close to a serious crisis that can not be overcome without the active involvement of national decision makers. If we do not have a  complex, well thought, we will face a real ‘epidemic of fractures, “said Dr. Andrea Ildiko Gasparik executive director of the Association for Prevention of Osteoporosis. Practically, experts estimate that the number of osteoporotic fractures will double over the next 50 years, especially due to demographic changes.

Although men are less exposed to this disease, the incidence is 2-4 times higher in women than in men (1 in 3 adult women will develop over the life an osteoporotic fracture, while only 1 in 8 men will suffer from the same cause, the age group 50-60 years, incidence is the same in both women and men). Also, experts noted that the incidence of disease is higher in Indo-European and Asian population than in African populations.

Consequences of Osteoporosis

Typical of osteoporosis is fracture of the wrist (after age 45 years).
Vertebral fractures (which can occur at age 55-60 years) is manifested by spine settlements (narrowing), leading to height loss, acute back pain. To this type of fracture, the risk of relapse increases of up to five times.
Hip fractures occur at an older age (after 70 years).

Risk factors for osteoporosis
Let’s not forget that there are a number of factors that “favor” the disease. We are dealing with two categories of risk factors:

Determinants which can not be controlled:
• age;
• race;
• sex;
• family history.

Factors which can be corrected:
• estrogen deficiency from any cause;
• an inadequate diet;
• lack of calcium and vitamin D;
• lack of exercise;
• smoking;
• coffee;
• alcohol.

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