Osteoporosis is a disease that affects the bones. It is characterized when the amount of bone mass decreases substantially and developed hollow bones, thin and extremely sensitive, more prone to fractures. It is part of normal aging and is more common in women than in men.
The disease progresses slowly and rarely shows symptoms before it happens something more serious like a fracture, which is usually spontaneous, i.e. not related to trauma. If they are not made diagnostic preventive osteoporosis can go unnoticed until it has greater severity. Osteoporosis can have their development delayed by preventive measures.
Menopause Risk Factor: Women over 40 who suffer any fracture in this age group are generally thin - which features a smaller bone formation - or had early menopause. Other risk factors include: being white, maintaining a sedentary lifestyle and have a diet low in calcium.
The greatest threat of disease is fracture, which interferes with the quality of life. In many cases, breaking a bone difficult movements, affect breathing and self-esteem of the patient. A hip fracture, for example, often disabling, requiring implant or screw. About 20% of women undergoing surgery required to correct the problem after a year die because of complications. Of those who survive, 50% are left with some kind of dependency, requiring special care.
Fractures: The biggest challenge is to prevent the first fracture. As the disease weakens the bones, no need to suffer major impacts for it to happen. Any injury, however small, can cause fracture. The most common are the spine, femur and forearm. Many bring serious consequences for the quality of life. The stage of menopause is a critical period for the development of osteoporosis. At this stage, ovulation ceases and decreases the production of the hormone estrogen. The hormone is a protective factor, as it helps keep calcium "stuck" to the bone.
More than half of vertebral fractures do not receive medical care. Fractures are silent, often confused with muscle strains or arthritis. After the first fracture, women may have additional fractures, suggesting that osteoporosis may be a disease of rapid progression. The accumulation of vertebral fractures without treatment can cause pain and even loss of height.
The examination is essential from the age of 65, when the risks of fracture are much greater. Densitometry can prove that there was no loss in bone mass normal cases, losses that occurred within the bone pattern in relation to the young woman or bone loss that make up the established disease.
Osteoporosis symptoms in Men: While he prefers the female population, osteoporosis can also reach men. Typically, the development of disease is influenced by factors such as alcoholism, age and chronic use of corticosteroids, used in the treatment of rheumatic diseases, asthma and allergies. However, a good bone formation, calcium-rich diet, physical activity and adequate exposure to sunlight are important factors to prevent osteoporosis.
Treatment and Prevention: Osteoporosis can be prevented and treated. A diet rich in calcium is essential for both the developed and the problem for those who want to prevent it. The woman needs 1,200 milligrams of calcium daily. Dairy products and some other foods are the source of the substance. A glass of milk has 300 milligrams, a cup of yogurt has about 400 milligrams and a big slice of cheese has 200. Broccoli, spinach, cabbage and fish are other foods that should be consumed. The production of vitamin D obtained through sun exposure of 30 minutes, is another important point, in addition to regular physical activity that contributes to bone health. Exercises with weights, walking and swimming are good options. Prevention should start in childhood.
One of the simplest exercises is walking. The exercises should not increase the risk of falling or excessive burdens on any bone, and that exercise is a proposal to increase bone mass and muscle mass, ie, functional capacity, to prevent falls and reduce the number of fractures. The impact of physical activity is essential for the development of the skeleton during childhood and adolescence and maintain bone mass in young adults.
In addition to medical treatment, the patient with osteoporosis can take simple measures to prevent fractures, and wear shoes with rubber soles, avoid mats, paying attention to the steps and lean on handrails, use proper lighting in bathrooms and maintain anti-slip flooring in the bathroom and the box. Great care is required after taking medicines that can cause dizziness.
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