What is Osteoporosis?

Osteoporosis is commonly referred to as the "silent disease" due to the fact bone loss happens devoid of signs . People may not realize that they have osteoporosis until a sudden strain, bump, or fall leads to a crack of a vertebra or other bone.

Q. What is osteoporosis?
A. Osteoporosis is a bone ailment that brings about reduction of the bones. Osteoporotic bones are fragile and have an enhanced likelihood for fracture with bumps or falls. Osteoporotic fractures most frequently manifest in the hip, spinal column, and wrist.

Q. How common is osteoporosis?
A. It is estimated that ten million Americans have osteoporosis. It can impact both males and females, but 80% of cases are identified in females. Individuals from all ethnic backgrounds can be at risk for osteoporosis.

Q. Am I at risk for osteoporosis?
A. Risk factors for osteoporosis are:

  • Higher age
  • Having a petite body frame
  • A family history of osteoporosis
  • Excessive use of alcohol
  • Cigarette smoking
  • Lack of exercise
  • Taking particular varieties of medication, in particular steroids, like prednisone, and particular anti-seizure medications, like phenytoin (Dilantin)
  • Glandular Diseases like thyroid, parathyroid and adrenal diseases
  • Eating disorders
  • Low calcium and vitamin D levels
  • Being Caucasian or Asian

In women:

  • Being post-menopausal women
  • Having had an early menopause
  • Having had surgery that eliminated their ovaries prior to menopause

In men:

  • Possessing low amounts of the male hormone, testosterone
  • Having prostate cancer treatments that decrease testosterone levels


Q. Who should have a DEXA test done?
A. A DEXA inspection ought to be considered for:

  • Females 65 years of age or older.
  • Women younger than 65 who possess risk elements for osteoporosis
  • All people with previous fracture suspicious for "brittle bones".
  • Anyone with a situation or taking a medicine linked with osteoporosis.

Q. Where can a obtain a DEXA scan?
A. Osteoporosis is preventable. Your probability for developing osteoporosis can be diminished by having a healthy lifestyle. To lessen the risk of osteoporosis:

  • Participate in weight bearing exercise like taking walks, jogging, or weight lifting
  • Get an adequate amount of minerals and nutritional vitamin supplements by means of diet and dietary supplements. (Most people at risk for osteoporosis require about 1,200 mg of calcium and 400-800 international units of vitamin D daily; talk to your doctor regarding how much calcium and vitamin D is appropriate for you.)
  • If you smoke cigarettes, quit.
  • Avoid excessive alcohol intake.

Q. What medications are there designed for osteoporosis?
A. Osteoporosis can be addressed. In addition to a eating a good diet plan, exercising, and quitting smoking, your doctor may suggest taking a drug to take care of or improve your bone density. Numerous varieties of medicinal drugs exist, including:

  • Bisphosphonates. Examples consist of aledronate (Fosamax®), risedronate (Actonel®), ibandronate (Boniva®) and zolendronic acid (Reclast®).
  • Calcitonin (Miacalcin® or Fortical®)
  • Raloxifene (Evista®)
  • Teriparatide (Forteo®).

Discuss with your physician about whether you need a medication and which is right for you.




“Under the care of Leo J. Borrell, M.D. since December 2001, I have seen a remarkable improvement in my mother’s condition. She is responding dramatically to the new regiment Dr. Borrell has prescribed”

- Beth Rose


Feb 3, 2008

The Interdisciplinary Team; The Role of the Psychiatrist

by Dr. Leo J. Borrell, featured in Assisted Living Consult for November/December 2006. A HealthCom Media Publication