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If you have osteoporosis and you fall, you are likely to break a bone.
More than ten million people currently have osteoporosis; another 34 million have low bone mass and therefore are at risk of developing the disease. More than 2 million Americans sustain a fracture related to osteoporosis each year.
Bone is a living tissue composed mainly of calcium and protein which provide strength. Bone is constantly reforming (remodeling) as calcium is added to your bones and absorbed by your body.
Osteoporosis or "porous bone" develops when bone calcium is no longer replaced as quickly as it is removed, making the bone brittle. Half of all women over 50 will sustain an osteoporosis-related fracture sometime in their life. Men account for 20 percent of those affected by osteoporosis.
Factors that contribute to osteoporosis are:
- Lack of weightbearing exercise
- Excessive thyroid or cortisone hormone
- Heredity, Caucasians and Asians are at greatest risk
- Smoking and excessive alcohol intake
- Reduced levels of estrogen after menopause
- Low calcium dietary intake, reduced calcium absorption and inadequate Vitamin D levels, which affect skeletal health.
The American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons
6300 N. River Road
Rosemont, IL 60018