Posts Tagged ‘Osteoporosis’
Friday is the Go Red For Women in Waterloo, sponsored by the American Heart Association. Heart Disease is now recognized as a major health issue for women, as well as men. Prevention of heart attacks and strokes gets a lot of attention. Breast cancer is also well recognized. These are worthy causes, but…..
Fractures from Osteoporosis are twice as common in women as heart attacks. Fractures are more common than heart attacks, breast cancers and strokes combined. More women die from complications after hip fracture than die from heart attacks. This is also a big deal, but Osteoporosis gets no respect.
Aunt Henrietta looked like half a raccoon with her entire left eye blackened. She dismissed her looks as not a problem saying, “I fall all the time, but I don’t break anything.” This is a change on both counts. Five years ago, falls were infrequent. Even so, she broke one wrist, then the other wrist, then her shoulder.
Two wrists, one shoulder, and half a dozen vertebral fragility fractures indicated Very Severe Osteoporosis. That was before she took the Anabolic, Forteo, for 2 years. She was the ideal patient for serious measures to stop her fractures. And it has worked!!
World Osteoporosis Day recognizes the ravages of osteoporosis on women internationally. Worldwide the risk of Hip Fracture is equal to the risk of Breast Cancer, Ovarian Cancer, and Uterine Cancer combined. For many, death comes much sooner after hip fracture.
Osteoporosis is not limited to richer countries like the US, EU, Japan, etc. Osteoporosis is even more devastating to poorer families in countries without welfare, where every member of the family must work their entire lives to ensure family survival. The International Osteoporosis Foundation (IOF) focuses on all women (and men). World Osteoporosis Day is the day to learn about the IOF 5 point plan for better bone health.
This week a patient was delighted to know she had no bone worries – based on her t-score of -2.4 in her hips. Unfortunately she was very wrong! “Osteopenia” is just a single test result. Other factors placed her at High Risk for Fracture.
One test does not tell the whole story. For instance, my total cholesterol is “normal”. That means that I have no heart worries? Wrong! I have hypertension, type-2 diabetes, and a history of congestive heart failure. I am at risk for heart problems. My patient is at risk for bone problems, specifically Fragility Fractures.