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Paget Disease (cont.)

Paget's Disease Symptoms

Most people with Paget's disease do not have symptoms. It is often discovered as an incidental finding on routine X-ray films or blood tests.

When symptoms do occur, the most common ones include joint pain and low back pain. Other less common symptoms include fractures, bowing deformities of the bones, hearing loss, headaches, and muscle weakness. Pagetic bone contains numerous blood vessels, so a traumatic fracture through pagetic bone may result in significant blood loss. A patient can rarely develop congestive heart failure because of the increased blood flow. Increased calcium levels from the bone remodeling process can cause kidney stones.

Fractures and bowing deformities can occur because the increased rate of remodeling caused by Paget's disease makes the bone weaker, predisposing patients to fractures or deformity. Hearing loss can result from involvement of the small bones of the inner ear. Headaches result from involvement of the skull and facial bones. Muscle weakness can occur if the spine is involved, leading to stenosis or a narrowing of the spinal canal and pinching of the spinal cord and nerve roots.

When to Seek Medical Care

People should seek medical care if they have increasing bone pain or deformities potentially related to Paget's disease. Also, people with weakness or a change in bowel or bladder function should seek immediate care to assess for involvement of the spine, leading to compression of the spinal cord and nerve roots.

Questions to Ask the Doctor

People with Paget's disease should inquire if they would benefit from medication. Additionally, patients should be periodically seen by their physician throughout their lives due to the low risk of malignant transformation to sarcoma.

Medically Reviewed by a Doctor on 7/22/2014
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Read What Your Physician is Reading on Medscape

Paget Disease »

Paget's disease (Paget disease), characterized by excessive and abnormal remodeling of bone, is a common disorder in middle-aged and elderly patients.

Read More on Medscape Reference »


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