Last Update : 01 April, 2015
Osteoporosis is a disease of bones in which bone becomes soft. Sometimes patients have no symptoms.
Osteoporosis is usually seen in women after 65 years and in males after 75 years of age.
There are usually no symptoms of Osteoporosis. Fracture occurring after minor injury makes your doctor to suspect Osteoporosis. Some elderly patients get general body pain.
Osteoporosis is most accurately diagnosed by BMD (DEXA) method. The machine measures bone strength at lower spine, hip and wrists. QCT, Ultrasonography (qualitative) are other methods to diagnose osteoporosis. Diagnosis done by Ultrasonography needs to be confirmed by DEXA method. WHO has defined parameters for diagnosis of osteoporosis.
No blood tests are routinely necessary for diagnosis of Osteoporosis. Calcium, vitamin D levels, thyroid and parathyroid hormone levels can be done if necessary. If Osteoporosis is diagnosed at younger age; a stepwise investigations are done to find cause of Osteoporosis.
Patients should take adequate amount of food which has high calcium/ vitamin D content like dairy products. They should make changes in home to reduce chances of fall. They can use walking stick. They should do gentle exercises to maintain muscle tone.
Osteoporosis drugs acts after few months and they are continued for few years. Necessary precautions are taken to monitor side effects of these drugs.