What Is Osteoporosis?
Osteoporosis is a pathological condition which makes the bones weak and fragile gradually and increases the risk of fractures.1 This is more prevalent in people above the age of 50. It is the most common cause of frequent fractures in the adult population, especially postmenopausal females.
What Role Do Hormones Play In The Development Of Osteoporosis?
The cells in the body continuously replace the old bones with new bones thus keeping the bones strong so that it can withstand the daily wear and tear of a normal life, but with osteoporosis this process is broken and the bone loss far exceeds the formation of new bones making the bones fragile and thin and thus making them prone to fractures. Deficiency of Estrogen usually as a result of menopause is the most common cause of osteoporosis. Some of the other hormonal conditions that can cause osteoporosis are
- Elevated parathyroid hormones
- Hyperthyroidism 2
- Excessive cortisol
- Depleted testosterone levels 3
How Can Osteoporosis Due To Hormonal Deficiency Be Treated?
Studies are at present ongoing to find out some method for effective management of osteoporosis due to hormonal deficiency. In the younger females, oral contraceptives have been ineffective. Researchers are working on insulin-like growth factor-1, testosterone as well as a postmenopausal osteoporosis drug as possible means for managing osteoporosis.
Along with this, increasing calcium in the diet along with vitamin D is extremely beneficial in keeping the bones strong. Participating in a daily exercise regimen keeps the weight ideal and also maintains hormonal balance thus preventing further bone loss. Calcium also is only helpful when the hormones are in balance. Hence, hormonal replacement therapy can also be looked at as a means for managing osteoporosis as estrogen has shown to protect bone tissue even more than calcium. The best way to prevent osteoporosis is to maintain healthy bones before menopause by means of exercise and a healthy lifestyle.
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