Ladies and Bone Well being Fundamentals4 min read
A girl’s threat of fracturing her hip from osteoporosis is the same as her threat of breast, uterine and ovarian most cancers — mixed. And half of all girls in the USA who’re over age 50 will break a bone on account of osteoporosis, a situation that happens when your bone high quality declines and bone weakens.
Osteoporosis could make it really easy on your bones to interrupt that even on a regular basis actions equivalent to stretching, twisting, bending too far backward or ahead, coughing, or bumping into one thing is usually a hazard. This may be critical as a result of damaged hips can result in a shorter lifespan, and damaged spines may cause an incapability to face up straight, paralysis or, generally even loss of life.
One in 5 girls over age 50 will develop the bone situation of their lifetime, so HealthyWomen lately performed a survey of 1,072 girls between the ages of 35 and 64 to evaluate consciousness of the illness in addition to data of screening for and prevention of this widespread situation.
As with so many illnesses, consciousness and prevention are key to higher outcomes relating to osteoporosis, but our survey revealed that just one in 4 of our respondents have been involved about their bone well being.
DEXA scan — a measure of bone well being
Twin power X-ray absorptiometry, known as a DEXA or DXA scan, measures bone mineral density (BMD) and is advisable for everybody above age 65. Nonetheless, healthcare suppliers (HCPs) might suggest a DEXA scan earlier if they’ve a purpose to suspect or need to rule out osteoporosis or osteopenia, which is when an individual has decreased BMD nevertheless it’s not low sufficient to be osteoporosis. Frequent conditions the place an HCP would possibly order a scan at any age embrace:
- A member of the family with bone well being points
- A current bone break
- Use of medicines linked to bone well being points
- One other prognosis, equivalent to most cancers, that might compromise bone well being
Since our respondents have been underneath the age of 65, it’s not stunning that 81% of them didn’t know their bone density rating. Of those that did know, the bulk have been respondents who’re involved about osteoporosis or osteopenia, together with girls who’re taking treatment for both situation.
Of our respondents who have been recognized with breast most cancers and suggested that they have been in danger for osteopenia or osteoporosis, 65% hadn’t had a DEXA scan up to now two years regardless of their elevated threat.
Eshani Agrawal, 28, is an instance of somebody who has had a DEXA scan at a younger age on account of being in a high-risk class. She has ulcerative colitis, a illness of the colon, and has taken medicines to fight flare-ups that generally have an effect on bone well being. “Since I used to be at a comparatively excessive dose, the physician requested me to get a DEXA scan,” she stated. “It seems that there might have been some harm carried out.” She defined that she’s pissed off that her bone well being may very well be affected by treatment and wonders if some tooth sensitivity may also be linked.
Donna Leslie, 65, has been looking out for bone well being points since she was 50 as a result of her older sister and mom each have osteoporosis. When Leslie’s mom was in her 50s, she rolled her ankle and broke it. Conscious of her mom’s historical past, Leslie bought a DEXA scan at 53 to offer her medical group a baseline quantity so they may monitor her BMD by the years. The scan confirmed she already had osteopenia. Her HCP instructed her to get extra calcium in her eating regimen however didn’t take some other motion. At 62, she had one other scan and discovered her rating had dropped to -2.5, a rating that signifies osteoporosis. Her HCPs then started aggressively treating her situation, prescribing annual infusions which, a number of years later, have led to a rise in bone mass.
Just one in 4 girls had been warned of doable bone loss
Simply as Agrawal skilled bone well being points as a facet impact from treatment for different situations, Anna*, 69, was recognized with osteopenia after a DEXA scan revealed low BMD scores in each hips. She had been taking a hair-loss treatment that she hadn’t been instructed might have an effect on bone well being. Anna’s not alone in her shock — the HealthyWomen survey revealed one in 4 girls who have been recognized with breast most cancers weren’t suggested by their HCPs that some medicines, equivalent to sure most cancers therapies, in addition to most cancers itself, might put their bone well being in danger.
Anna was additionally stunned by her low BMD as a result of she was chubby, and she or he’d all the time thought osteopenia and osteoporosis are situations that underweight or regular weight girls develop, which isn’t essentially true. Each she and Leslie have since discovered that train can sluggish the progress of the illness and now stroll commonly, amongst different measures equivalent to consuming calcium-rich meals and maintaining with HCP follow-up visits.
Sadly, our survey taught us that, regardless of osteoporosis being a standard situation amongst girls, many aren’t conscious of the prevention and remedy methods they’ll take to beat back the illness. It’s necessary for each lady to grasp how they’ll hold their bones wholesome and to study extra about bone well being. You’ll want to discuss to your HCP about your specific threat.
*Anna is just not her actual title.
This useful resource was created with assist from Amgen.
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