What Is Osteoporosis?
Osteoporosis is a condition affecting bone density, or the strength of your bones. In osteoporosis, bones lose strength and become more fragile. Bones are made up of minerals, such as calcium. When bones lose these minerals, they become thinner and less dense. Osteoporotic bones break or crack more easily than normal bones.
It is common.
Half of all women, and one third of men, over the age of 60, will have a fracture (break) due to osteoporosis.
It is serious.
Fractures from osteoporosis are major causes of hospital admissions, long-term disability, and even death in older Australians.
It is a silent disease.
There are usually no signs or symptoms until a fracture occurs. Any bone can be affected, but the most common ones are bones in the hip, spine, wrist, ribs, pelvis, and upper arm.
There is good news!
What does osteopenia mean?
Osteopenia may be diagnosed if you have lower than normal bone density, but it is not low enough to be classed as osteoporosis. If you have osteopenia, you should also take steps to protect your bones.