Osteoporosis FAQs Glossary of Terms

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

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

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

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Asthma: A common lung disorder in which inflammation causes the bronchi to swell and narro...

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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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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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Breathing: The process of respiration, during which air is inhaled into the lungs through ...

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

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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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Complication: In medicine, an unanticipated problem that arises following, and is a result...

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

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Compression fracture: A fracture caused by compression, the act of pressing together. Comp...

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Crohn's disease: A chronic inflammatory disease, primarily involving the small and large ...

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Diagnosis: 1 The nature of a disease; the identification of an illness. 2 A ...

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

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Endometriosis: The presence of tissue that normally grows inside the uterus (womb) in an ...

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

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

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

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

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Informatics: The application of computers and statistics to the management of information....

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Internal medicine: The medical specialty dedicated to the diagnosis and medical treatment ...

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Liver: The largest solid organ in the body, situated in the upper part of the abdomen on t...

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Low testosterone: Abnormally low levels of the male sex hormone testosterone in the blood....

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Lungs: The lungs are a pair of breathing organs located with the chest which remove carbon...

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Lupus: A chronic inflammatory disease that is caused by autoimmunity. Patients with lupus ...

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

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NIH: National Institutes of Health.

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Nutrition: 1) The science or practice of taking in and utilizing foods. 2) A nourishing ...

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Onset: In medicine, the first appearance of the signs or symptoms of an illness as, for ex...

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Osteopenia: Mild thinning of the bone mass. Osteopenia represents a low bone mass and is n...

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

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

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Pharmacy: A location where prescription medications are sold. A pharmacy is constantly sup...

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

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

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Prognosis: The forecast of the probable outcome or course of a disease; the patient's chan...

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

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Rheumatology: A subspecialty of internal medicine that involves the nonsurgical evaluation...

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Scan: As a noun, the data or image obtained from the examination of organs or regions of...

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Spinal cord: The major column of nerve tissue that is connected to the brain and lies with...

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

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Symptom: Any subjective evidence of disease. In contrast, a sign is objective. Blood comin...

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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.

Thoracic: Pertaining to the chest. For example, the thoracic aorta is the part of the aort...

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Thoracic vertebrae: The 12 thoracic vertebrae are situated between the cervical (neck) ver...

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

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Vertebra: A vertebra is one of 33 bony segments that form the spinal column of humans. 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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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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