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Osteoporosis FAQs (cont.)

How Is Osteoporosis Detected?

Unfortunately, many people do not know they have osteoporosis until they experience a broken bone. By that time, bones are already weak. However, osteoporosis can be prevented or delayed by early detection and treatment. Specialized tests called bone density tests can measure bone density (solidness) in various sites of the body, such as the hip, spine, and wrist. These tests are quick (taking less than 15 minutes), painless, and noninvasive and are extremely helpful in screening for and making a diagnosis of osteoporosis. This bone density measurement provides a quantitative assessment, called a T-score, which can be used for diagnosis and monitoring during management. A bone density test can detect osteoporosis before a fracture occurs and can predict your chances of having a broken bone in the future. A dual-energy X-ray absorptiometry (DXA) scan of bone mineral density (BMD) can determine your rate of bone loss and/or be used to monitor the effects of treatment. Talk to the doctor about these tests.

Which Health-Care Professionals Treat Osteoporosis?

Health-care professionals who treat osteoporosis include primary-care physicians, such as doctors of general medicine, family practitioners, internists, as well as gynecologists, rheumatologists, endocrinologists, physiatrists, and orthopedic surgeons. Additional providers of treatments for osteoporosis include physical therapists, nutritionists, and occupational therapists.

Medically Reviewed by a Doctor on 2/25/2016

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Osteoporosis is a systemic skeletal disorder characterized by decreased bone mass and deterioration of bony microarchitecture.

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