Osteoporosis Glossary of Terms

The following are health and medical definitions of terms that appear in the Osteoporosis article.

Abnormal: Outside the expected norm, or uncharacteristic of a particular patient.

Absorb: 1. To take something in, as through the skin or the intestine.
2....

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Acid reflux: A common condition and an abnormal one in which acid in the stomach rises up...

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Acquired: Not inherited, or present at birth (congenital), but developing after birth. For...

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Aerobic: Oxygen-requiring. Aerobic bacteria need oxygen to grow. Aerobic exercise requires...

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Androgen: A male sex hormone that promotes the development and maintenance of the male s...

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Ankle: The ankle joint is complex. It is made up of two joints: the true ankle joint and ...

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Anorexia: An eating disorder characterized by markedly reduced appetite or total aversion...

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Anorexia nervosa: See Anorexia.

Arthritis: Inflammation of a joint. When joints are inflamed they can develop stiffness, w...

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Back pain: Pain felt in the low or upper back. Causes of pain in the low and upper back in...

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Bisphosphonate: A class of drugs used to strengthen bone. Bisphosphonates are used to trea...

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Blood clots: Blood that has been converted from a liquid to a solid state. Also called a t...

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Bone cancer: A malignancy of bone. Primary bone cancer (cancer that begins in bone) is rar...

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Bone density: Bone density is the amount of bone tissue in a certain volume of bone. It ca...

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Bone mineral density: BMD, a measure of bone density, reflecting the strength of bones as ...

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Brain: The portion of the central nervous system that is located within the skull. It func...

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Breast cancer: Breast cancer is diagnosed with self- and physician-examination of the brea...

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Bulimia: Also called bulimia nervosa. An eating disorder characterized by episodes of secr...

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Calcitonin: A hormone produced by the thyroid gland that lowers the levels of calcium and ...

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Calcium: A mineral found mainly in the hard part of bones, where it is stored. Calcium is ...

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Cancer: An abnormal growth of cells which tend to proliferate in an uncontrolled way and, ...

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Cascade: A sequence of successive activation reactions involving enzymes (enzyme cascade) ...

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Cholesterol: The most common type of steroid in the body. Cholesterol has a reputation for...

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Clinical trials: Trials to evaluate the effectiveness and safety of medications or medical...

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Compression: 1. The act of pressing together. As in a compression fracture, nerve c...

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Constipation: Infrequent and frequently incomplete bowel movements. Constipation is the op...

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Cushing syndrome: The constellation of symptoms and signs caused by an excess of cortisol ...

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Dowager's hump: An abnormal outward curvature of the thoracic vertebrae of the upper back....

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Emergency department: The department of a hospital responsible for the provision of medica...

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Endocrine: Pertaining to hormones and the glands that make and secrete them into the blood...

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Esophagus: The tube that connects the pharynx (throat) with the stomach. The esophagus lie...

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Essential: In medicine, of unknown cause, as in essential hypertension (high blood pressur...

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Estrogen: A female steroid hormone that is produced by the ovaries and, in lesser amounts,...

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Estrogens: Female hormones produced by the ovaries. Estrogen deficiency can lead to osteop...

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Family history: The family structure and relationships within the family, including inform...

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FDA: Food and Drug Administration.

Fracture: A break in bone or cartilage. Although usually a result of trauma, a fracture ca...

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Gastrointestinal: Adjective referring collectively to the stomach and small and large inte...

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Genetic: Having to do with genes and genetic
information.

Heart: The muscle that pumps blood received from veins into arteries throughout the body. ...

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Heart disease: Any disorder that affects the heart. Sometimes the term "heart disease" is ...

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Heartburn: An uncomfortable feeling of burning and warmth occurring in waves rising up be...

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Hip fracture: Broken bone in the hip, a key health problem among the elderly, usually due ...

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Hormone: A chemical substance produced in the body that controls and regulates the activit...

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Hot flashes: A sudden wave of mild or intense body heat caused by rushes of hormonal chang...

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Humerus: The long bone in the upper arm that extends from the shoulder to the elbow.

Hysterectomy: An operation to remove the uterus. Hysterectomies are most commonly performe...

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Indicate: In medicine, to make a treatment or procedure advisable because of a particular ...

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Induced menopause (and "menopause, induced"): Menopause induced by an unusual event, suc...

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Kidney: One of a pair of organs located in the right and left side of the abdomen. The kid...

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Kneecap: The patella, the small bone in the front of the knee. The patella is a little (se...

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Leg: In popular usage, the part of the body from the top of the thigh down to the foot, an...

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Low back pain: Pain in the lower back area that can relate to problems with the lumbar spi...

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Menopause: The time in a woman's life when menstrual periods permanently stop; it is also ...

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Menstrual: Pertaining to menstruation (the menses), as in last menstrual period, menstrua...

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Metabolism: The whole range of biochemical processes that occur within a living organism. ...

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Mortality: Susceptible to death.

Mouth: 1. The upper opening of the digestive tract, beginning with the lips and con...

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Muscle: Muscle is the tissue of the body which primarily functions as a source of power. T...

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Nasal: Having to do with the nose.

Nausea: Stomach queasiness, the urge to vomit. Nausea can be brought on by many causes, in...

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Neck: The part of the body joining the head to the shoulders. Also, any narrow or constric...

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Neck pain: Neck pain is the sensation of discomfort in the neck area. Neck pain can result...

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Occupational therapist: A licensed health professional who is trained to evaluate patients...

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Offspring: The progeny, or young, born to a person. In a larger sense, the offspring are c...

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Osteoporosis: Thinning of the bones, with reduction in bone mass, due to depletion of calc...

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Paget disease: A chronic bone disorder that typically results in enlarged, deformed bones ...

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Pain: An unpleasant sensation that can range from mild, localized discomfort to agony. Pa...

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Parathyroid hormone: See Parathormone.

Pelvic: Having to do with the pelvis, the lower part of the abdomen, located between the h...

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Pelvis: The lower part of the abdomen, located between the hip bones. Structures in the fe...

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Peripheral: Situated away from the center, as opposed to centrally located.

Phosphate: A form of phosphoric acid. Calcium phosphate makes bones and teeth hard.

Phosphorus: An essential element in the diet and a major component of bone.

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Postmenopausal: After menopause, the period of time after a woman has experienced 12 conse...

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Posture: The carriage of the body as a whole, the attitude of the body, or the position of...

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Probability: The likelihood that something will happen. For example, a probability of less...

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Progestin: Any one of a group of steroid hormones that have the effect of progesterone.

Radiate: To spread out from a central area. For example, sciatic pain may radiate outward ...

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Receptor: 1. In cell biology, a structure on the surface of a cell (or inside a cel...

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Reflux: The term used when liquid backs up into the esophagus from the stomach.

Resorption: The process of losing substance. For example, when bone is surgically reshaped...

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Rheumatoid arthritis: An autoimmune disease characterized by chronic inflammation of joint...

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Risk factor: Something that increases a person's chances of developing a disease. For exam...

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Shin: 1. The tibia, the larger of the two bones in the lower leg.
2. T...

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Shinbone: The larger of the two bones in the lower leg (the smaller one being the fibula)....

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Skeletal: Pertaining to the skeleton, the bones of the body that collectively provide the ...

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Spinal compression: The act of exerting an abnormal amount of pressure on the spinal cord...

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Spine: 1) The column of bone known as the vertebral column, which surrounds and protects ...

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Stroke: The sudden death of brain cells due to lack of oxygen, caused by blockage of blood...

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Surgeon: A physician who treats disease, injury, or deformity via operative or manual meth...

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Syndrome: A combination of symptoms and signs that together represent a disease process.

Testosterone: A "male hormone" -- a sex hormone produced by the testes that encourages th...

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Therapy: The treatment of disease. Therapy is synonymous with treatment.

Thromboembolism: Formation in a blood vessel of a clot (thrombus) that breaks loose and is...

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Thyroid: 1. The thyroid gland. Also, pertaining to the thyroid gland. 2. A p...

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Trauma: A physical or emotional injury.

Ultrasound: High-frequency sound waves. Ultra-sound waves can be bounced off tissues by us...

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Urine: Liquid waste produced by the kidneys. Urine is a clear, transparent fluid that norm...

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Uterine lining: The inner layer of the uterus (womb); the cells that line the womb; anatom...

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Uterus: A hollow, pear-shaped organ that is located in a woman's lower abdomen, between th...

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Vertebrae: The preferred plural of vertebra. (The alternate plural is vertebras.) See also...

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Vitamin D: A steroid vitamin which promotes the intestinal absorption and metabolism of ca...

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Vitamins: The word "vitamin" was coined in 1911 by the Warsaw-born biochemist Casimir Funk...

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Wrist: The part of the hand that is nearest the forearm and consists of the carpal bones a...

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X-ray: High-energy radiation with waves shorter than those of visible light. X-ray is used...

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Youth: The time between childhood and maturity.

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Medical Dictionary