Tag: osteopenia

Osteopenia is a close relative of the bone-weakening disease, osteoporosis. It, too, is bone mineral density that is lower than normal, but it?s not low enough to qualify for a diagnosis of osteoporosis. If you have osteopenia, it?s important to strengthen your bones, because you are at greater risk for osteoporosis and bone fractures in the future.

Your risk for osteopenia increases as you age, because bones begin to break down faster as you get older. In women, the rate of bone loss speeds up dramatically after menopause because the body no longer produces the hormone estrogen, which helps build bones. Other risk factors include a family history of osteoporosis and a slim body frame. You may also be more prone to thinning bones if you?ve had an eating disorder like anorexia, you received radiation or chemotherapy to treat cancer, or you took steroid medicine to treat an autoimmune disorder such as rheumatoid arthritis.

Osteopenia doesn?t cause any symptoms. You might not realize you have weak bones until the condition progresses and you develop a fracture. Your doctor can diagnose osteopenia and osteoporosis with a bone density test, called a dual-energy x-ray absorptiometry (DXA) scan. This test compares the mineral content, or density, of your bones against those of a younger person of your gender. The result is reported as a T-score. A T-score of between -1.0 and -2.5 means you have osteopenia. A score of -2.5 or lower means you have osteoporosis.

If your bone density is low, your doctor will recommend that you start doing more weight-bearing exercises, such as walking or dancing. Nutritional interventions include getting more calcium and vitamin D, and limiting caffeine and alcohol. Bone-building medicines such as alendronate (Fosamax), risedronate (Actonel), or raloxifene (Evista) may also be an option.

Are You at Risk for Osteopenia? Symptoms May Not Tell the Story

Are You at Risk for Osteopenia? Symptoms May Not Tell the Story

Osteopenia isn’t as serious as osteoporosis—see our posts defining bone loss test scores of osteoporosis -2.5 or osteoporosis -3.0. But it’s also not easy to detect; there aren’t any obvious osteopenia symptoms.

Certain factors, however, can make you vulnerable to osteopenia, meaning that it’s important to preserve your bone density. Specifically,

What Is a DEXA Scan?

What Is a DEXA Scan?

A DEXA scan (also written as DXA scan) is what health professionals call dual-energy X-ray absorptiometry. A test that measures the strength of your bones as you age, a DEXA scan is necessary for certain individuals because the body manufactures bone less efficiently as we get older.

Research suggests that

Can Osteoporosis Be Reversed Without Drugs?

Can Osteoporosis Be Reversed Without Drugs?

Many women and men diagnosed with osteoporosis are immediately prescribed prescription drugs which, they discover sooner or later, can have difficult-to-tolerate side effects as well as frightening long-term risks. Can osteoporosis be reversed? This realization leads many individuals with osteoporosis to ask, “Can osteoporosis be reversed without drugs?” Unfortunately, there

Why Is Sugar Bad for You?

Why Is Sugar Bad for You?

You already know that eating lots of refined sugar can cause weight gain. But, did you know that sugar consumption also impacts the health of your bones? The answer to the question, “Why is Sugar Bad for You?” may surprise you!

Heel Pain: 8 Common Causes

Heel Pain: 8 Common Causes

The heel of the foot is sometimes called the “hindfoot,” and people understandably think of it first as a bone, also called the calcaneus. But there are actually many different types of tissue that make up the heel. Disorders of any of these tissues and the structures they form can

Muscular Dystrophy: What Causes This Disabling Condition?

Muscular Dystrophy: What Causes This Disabling Condition?

We typically think of muscular dystrophy as a singular disease. But, per the National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke, it’s more complex than that: “The muscular dystrophies (MD) are a group of more than 30 genetic diseases characterized by progressive weakness and degeneration of the skeletal muscles that control

2. The Benefits of Physical Activity

Physical activity is essential for everyone. It improves mood, reduces stress, and can even help decrease the pain of osteoarthritis. In fact, there are few diseases or conditions for which exercise hasn’t shown some positive impact. Multiple studies over the years have provided further evidence to these benefits. For example,

10 Vitamin D Deficiency Symptoms You Can Identify Yourself

10 Vitamin D Deficiency Symptoms You Can Identify Yourself

Vitamin D deficiency symptoms have been linked to numerous health problems, including heart disease, depression, and even cancer.[1] Here are 10 signs you’re not getting enough vitamin D:

Depression or anxiety
Bone softening (low bone density) or fractures
Fatigue and generalized weakness
Muscle cramps and weakness
Joint pain (most noticeable

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