Osteoporosis is a disease in which bone density decreases, making bones brittle and prone to fracture. Osteoporosis is called the “silent” disease because there are no early warning signs and few outward indications of the disease until a fracture occurs.
Through highly accurate technologies, we can help diagnose osteoporosis very early, even before significant bone loss has occurred. The radiological examination equipment we use is called a bone densitometer, also known as a DEXA. The spine, hip and forearm are the most accurate areas of the body to measure. Our equipment at the Women’s Center can individualize your results according to sex, age and ethnicity.
Some risk factors for osteoporosis include small frame, Caucasian or Asian race, post-menopausal women, family history of osteoporosis, diet low in calcium, physical inactivity, smoking cigarettes or drinking alcohol in excess. Menopause — whether artificial (surgery or medication), early, late or normal age — puts a woman at risk. The first five years following menopause is when a woman loses the most bone density.