What Is Osteoporosis?
Osteoporosis is a disease characterized by low bone mass and loss of bone tissue that leads to weak and fragile bones.
What Causes Osteoporosis?
Osteoporosis occurs when the body fails to form enough new bone, when too much old bone is reabsorbed by the body, or both. Women are at a greater risk than men, especially women who are elderly, thin, or small. Other risk factors include the following:
What Are the Risks of Osteoporosis?
Bone pain similar to that of arthritis may occur in the early course of the disease. Later, sharp pain may suddenly occur and become worse with activity or weight bearing. Fractures may occur, particularly in your spine, although you may not have fallen. These are called spontaneous fractures. These fractures compress the vertebrae in the spine and are the cause for loss of height. Fractures at other sites, especially the hips, wrists, or ribs, occur more easily from falling down.
Medically Reviewed by a Doctor on 2/11/2016
Mary L Windle, PharmD
Kristine M Lohr, MD
Francisco Talavera, PharmD, PhD
Lee P Shulman, MD
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