Osteoporosis

It is very important that people over 70yrs have a check up of their bone health to screen for osteoporosis.

Osteoporosis is a condition which weakens your bones and increases your risk of broken bones (known as fractures). Osteoporosis usually has no symptoms until a fracture occurs, and so is often called the ‘silent disease’. Hip , spine or wrist fractures due to osteoporosis can cause pain, disability and loss of independence.

The good news is osteoporosis can be detected before symptoms occur, and step taken to reduce the risk of fractures, through a variety of medications and simple lifestyle changes.

We recommend patients at risk osteoporosis have a bone density scan to check their bone health and fracture risk.

Osteoporosis affects both women and men and is more common than both breast cancer and prostate cancer.

Risk factors include:

  • family history
  • increasing age (over 50 years old)
  • low levels of vitamin D and calcium
  • certain diseases incl coeliac disease
  • early menopause
  • certain medications
  • smoking
  • alcohol
  • low levels of physical activity
  • treatment for cancer
  • low testosterone

 

Like having a mammogram or prostate check, our doctors at Reydon Street can help you to get a bone density scan to check for osteoporosis. Medicare rebates may be available.

A bone density scan is:

  • quick (10 -15 minutes)
  • painless
  • as easy as an x-ray & you don’t have to remove clothing.

More than 212,000 Australians have a bone density scan every year.
 
Osteoporosis affects both women and men and is more common than both breast cancer and prostate cancer – have you had a screen for osteoporosis?
 
Please make an appointment with your doctor to discuss having an osteoporosis check.

In the meantime you can learn more about your risk of osteoporosis by downloading this leaflet from REFRAME osteoporosis. You can learn more about this project at reframeosteoporosis.com.au

As well as downloading the Are you at Risk? leaflet why not access Osteoporosis Australia  website which has articles on calcium, vitamin D and exercise to help reduce your risk.

If you want  to go further in understanding your risk factors for osteoporosis  check the  link osteoporosis.org.au/risk-factors.

You can also calculate your risk using the Know Your Bones tool.

If your risk of fracture is high you are recommended to see your doctor soon. However, even if your risk is low or moderate, you should still see your doctor to consider a Bone Density Scan to assess your bone strength further.

Check your calcium intake using an online dietary calculator like this one from the International Osteoporosis Foundation

http://www.iofbonehealth.org/calcium-calculator

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