What Is Osteoporosis?

Bones are living tissues that are in balance under normal circumstances with break down and formation of bone. Osteoporosis develops when the rate of new or fresh bone production is exceeded by bone loss; and also abnormal bony architecture develops. This formula leads to higher risks for bone fracture with very little trauma or injury. Coughing or bending over or lifting modest weights can lead to fractures. Typically, fractures related to osteoporosis occur in the spine, wrist, or hip. Working closely with your Rheumatologist in Camden County, NJ, Mark Fisher MD FACR, weight-bearing exercises, a healthy diet, and medications can help to strengthen weak bones and reduce the risks for further bone loss and fractures. It is so important to manage this condition successfully because hip and spinal fractures in this condition can be associated with a 25% risk of mortality within 1 year- Not a benign condition!

Causes of Osteoporosis

Your body is constantly renewing your bones, making new ones and breaking down old ones. When you are younger, your body can produce new bone more quickly and maintain a fair balance with the rate of bone loss, resulting in preservation of bone mass and strength.

We usually reach our peak bone mass in our early 30’s. After this, bone loss accelerates.

Peak bone mass varies with different ethnic and racial groups. There are genetic differences amongst these groups and families which can lead to higher risks for bone loss and osteoporosis. Having a higher peak bone mass means that you will have more bone mass remaining when bone loss acceleration begins. This has an impact on bone health and osteoporosis as you grow older.

Osteoporosis can occur in women and men regardless of race, but studies have shown that Asian and Caucasian postmenopausal women, have the highest risk.

Symptoms of Osteoporosis

Bone loss does not typically present with any symptoms! Pain develops when fractures occur!

Some signs for osteoporosis are:

  • A hunched posture and protruding abdomen
  • Loss of height of 2 inches or more
  • Back pain due to a collapsed or fractured vertebrae or other bones

Once you experience any of these osteoporosis warning signs, consult with your Rheumatologist Mark Fisher MD FACR in Camden County, NJ, for accurate and prompt diagnosis. Early treatment can significantly help to slow down the progression of this condition and reduce the risks for fractures and deformities and other medical problems.

Complications of Untreated Osteoporosis

The most severe complications of untreated osteoporosis include hip and spine fractures. Hip fractures, in particular, are typically a result of falls and could lead to disability and increased mortality risk. In addition, spinal and other bone fractures can occur even without injury. Sometimes a person has a fracture and this is the cause of the fall.

Management of Osteoporosis

While there is no cure, we must all remember there are very effective and successful treatment strategies for patients with this potentially devastating but very treatable condition. Successful therapy is always best when instituted early. A DEXA or bone density study is the best tool we have along with appropriate laboratory studies for the proper assessment of this condition.

For More Information on Osteoporosis and its management, please contact Mark Fisher MD FACR , a board certified specialist in Rheumatology. You Can Be Helped!!

Dial (856) 547-8004 to reach Mark Fisher, MD, in Camden County, NJ, and schedule your visit with our Rheumatologist, Dr. Mark Fisher.