Osteoporosis: In this metabolic bone disorder, the rate of bone resorption accelerates while the rate of bone formation slows down, causing a loss of bone mass.
Bones lose calcium and phosphate salts and , thus, become porous (penetrated by pores and open spaces), brittle, and abnormally vulnerable to fracture. Osteoporosis may be primary or secondary to an underlying disease. Often called senile or postmenopausal osteoporosis, primary osteoporosis most commonly develops in elderly, postmenopausal women.
The cause of primarily osteoporosis remains unknown. Secondary osteoporosis may result from prolonged therapy with steroids or heparin, or total immobilization or disuse of a bone (such case as hemiplegia). It has also been link to alcoholism, malnutrition, malabsorption, scurvy, lactose intolerance, hyperthyroidism. Risk factors include estrogen deficiency, poor dietary intake of calcium, declining gonadal adrenal function, and those who is lacking in mobility (sedentary life – style)
Pain in lower back that radiates around the trunk
Curving of the thoracic spine (kyphosis) – hump back in appearance
Loss of height
An elderly person often becomes aware of the disorder when he bends to lift something, hears a snapping sound, then feels a sudden pain in the lower back.
Symptomatic treatment for preventive measures to decrease and or eliminate other fractures and to control pain., includes: Physical therapy, estrogen therapy to decrease the rate of bone resorption, fluoride to stimulate bone formation, and calcium and vitamin D to support normal bone metabolism.
Patient may require a back brace to support the weakened vertebrae.
Pain medication may be prescribed
Proper diet of calcium and vitamin D, and gentle exercise