Osteoporosis

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Osteoporosis, or bone loss, affects nearly half of all women over the age of 50.  Louisiana Women’s Healthcare offers the expertise and services needed to help women improve their bone health and prevent osteoporosis.

What is osteoporosis?

Osteoporosis is a condition that reduces bone strength and puts individuals at greater risk of breaking or fracturing a bone. Women are more at risk of developing osteoporosis than men because levels of the female hormone essential for healthy bones (oestrogen) fall after menopause. This can lead to a rapid decrease in bone density.

What are the symptoms of osteoporosis?

Symptoms of osteoporosis are virtually non-existent, which is why many individuals may not be aware or affected by it until they have already suffered a broken bone. For this reason, routine osteoporosis screenings are incredibly important, especially for those with high-risk factors.

Osteoporosis has 3 main warning signs:

  • A stooped posture and even a loss of height over time
  • Back pain that could be caused by a collapsed or fractured vertebra in your back
  • A bone that breaks more easily than expected

How is osteoporosis detected?

If you have increased risk factors for developing osteoporosis, you will be asked to undergo a bone density screening test.  A bone density test (also known as bone mass measurement or bone mineral density test) measures the strength and density of your bones. It is often done as a woman gets close to menopause. The test can be repeated later and help determine how quickly you are losing bone mass and density. This painless, noninvasive, and safe test is performed on the 1st floor of Louisiana Women’s Healthcare.

How is osteoporosis treated?

Osteoporosis can be effectively treated through healthy lifestyle changes when caught early on. For instance, calcium and vitamin D supplements can aid in the development of stronger, healthier bones. In addition, regular exercise can strengthen your bones and overall immune system function. Your OB-GYN at Louisiana Women’s Healthcare may also prescribe medications that can help rebuild bones or prevent further bone loss from occurring.

How is osteoporosis avoided?

Some steps that help reduce your risk of developing osteoporosis and experiencing broken bones include:

  • Quitting smoking: Smoking increases the rate of bone loss
  • Avoiding excessive alcohol: More than two alcoholic drinks a day decreases bone formation and increases your risk of falling
  • Eating right: Get plenty of calcium and vitamin D
  • Staying active: Do weight-bearing exercises
  • Preventing falls: Wear shoes with nonslip soles and low heels. Look where you’re going and install grab bars inside and outside your shower.

Treatment for osteoporosis in Baton Rouge, Louisiana

Osteoporosis is a condition that should not be taken lightly. A broken bone can result in hospitalization, surgery and many long-term effects. If you have concerns regarding your bone density make at Louisiana Women’s Healthcare online, through MyOchsner, or by phone (225) 201-2010.