OSTEOPOROSIS; THE SILENT DISEASE

Keeping the body in good health is our duty; otherwise we will not be able to keep our mind strong and clear.  Osteoporosis is indeed a major but unappreciated public health problem.

Bones are without doubt living and active tissues that makes up the skeleton. And they comprises the Compact tissue (harder and outer tissue of bones, strong and durable), the Cancellous tissue (sponge-like tissue inside bones, they are lighter, flexible, less dense), and the Subchondral tissue (The smooth tissue at the ends of bones, which is covered with cartilage. Cartilage is the specialized, gristle connective tissue that is present in adults and also the tissue from which most bones develop in children). Our bones are constantly renewing itself. When an old bone tissue is broken down by cells called osteoclasts; Osteoblasts another cells replace a new bone material.

During childhood and adolescence, new bones are formed quickly. Our bones grow bigger and stronger. Bone density reaches its peak by our mid- to late-20s. After this, new bone is produced as older bone is broken down. This clearly means that the adult skeleton is completely renewed.

Ultimately, from the age of 40, the bones start to be broken down more quickly than it’s been replaced, so our bones slowly begin to lose their density.

Osteoporosis is a silent bone disease that thins and weakens the bones; therefore causing the bones to become fragile and fracture (break) easily, especially the bones in the spine, hip, and wrist. You might not know you have it until you break a bone.

CAUSES OF OSTEOPOROSIS

Generally, osteoporosis affects both men and women. But women are of a higher risk.

1. Deficiency of Calcium

Literally, bones contain some minerals such as Calcium and Phosphorous. In other words, they are minerals reservoirs. Our organs like the heart, nerves, and muscles solely depend on calcium. When there is no availability of calcium in the blood, the organs consumes the minerals in the bone, and therefore causing the bones to be thin, and brittle (inflexible, liable to break easily). In other words, when there is deficiency of calcium, the bones becomes weak.  

2. Deficiency of Oestrogen in Women

Oestrogen is female sex hormones. It plays an important role in the females’ body such as; during Puberty, Menstrual cycle, Pregnancy, maintaining normal cholesterol levels, and strengthening of bones. Apparently, during menopause oestrogen levels automatically reduces resulting in low bone density.

3. Deficiency of Testosterone in Men

Testosterone is a hormone produced in the testicles. It stimulates sperm production, builds muscles and strengthens bones. However, deficiency of testosterone will result to lower bone volume and bone fractures.

4. Lack of Exercise

Obviously, exercise is beneficial to health. It improves health, build and maintain healthy bone density. Lack of physical activity can result to osteoporosis.

5. Deficiency of Vitamin D

Vitamin D is essential for strong bones; it helps in absorbing and regulating calcium. However, lack of vitamin D will eventually lead to weak bones and increase bone loss.

6. Smoking.

7. Excessive intake of Alcohol.

8. Increased levels of thyroid hormone (Hyperthyroidism) can lead to bone loss, and increased levels of parathyroid hormone (Hyperparathyroidism) will result in the removal of calcium from bone, which can eventually lead to osteoporosis.

9. Some certain medications may lead to Osteoporosis; Antiseizure drugs, Corticosteroids and Prednisone.

Unfortunately, osteoporosis is asymptomatic, meaning it doesn’t have any symptoms until the bone fractures (breaks).

REMEDY FOR OSTEOPOROSIS

The ideal goal for the treatment of osteoporosis includes;

1. Embrace a Change of Lifestyle;

  • Quit Smoking
  • Regular Exercise
  • Limit your intake of Alcohol

2. A Healthy Diet: – A balanced diet with adequate amount of Calcium and Vitamin D.

3. Medications;

  • Risedronate (Actonel)
  • Ibandronate (Boniva)
  • Teriparatide  (Forteo)
  • Raloxifene  (Evista)
  • Alendronate (Fosamax)
  • Zoledronate (Reclast)
  • Denosumab (Prolia)
  • Calcitonin (calcimar)

However, it does seem incredible that Osteoporosis can be successfully treated and as well prevented.

9 thoughts on “OSTEOPOROSIS; THE SILENT DISEASE

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

shares