Osteoporosis is a disease that causes the bones to weaken, become brittle, and break. It is a disease commonly thought to only impact women, but in reality, the condition impacts millions of men in the United States each year. Advanced Radiology explains the causes of osteoporosis in men.
As we grow, our bones are always being replaced. Bone reproduction is an out with the old, in with the new type of system, with the peak of bone mass occurring in a person’s twenties. By this time, most men have developed more bone mass than women, and after this peak, the amount of bone one begins to decline slowly, as the new formation of bone slows down. In women, the declination of bone rapidly increases during menopause, but men begin losing bone more quickly around age sixty-five. Just like women, men also experience a decrease in their ability to absorb calcium. Calcium is a critical nutrient necessary to maintaining bone strength. Take the bone loss and add in a decrease in calcium absorption, and you have a recipe for bone fracture as bones become more and more fragile.
Fractures caused by osteoporosis often occur in the hip, wrist, and spine, and cause permanent disability for both sexes. However, hip fractures in men often result in significant complications and often lead to death for male patients. Spinal fractures in osteoporosis patients can lead to painful spinal curves that impair a patient’s ability to stand or walk. These fractures are often caused by compression as the fragile bones collapse under the body’s own weight.
Osteoporosis caused by bone loss is only one type of osteoporosis experienced by men. There is another type of osteoporosis, known as idiopathic osteoporosis, which has no known specific cause. Idiopathic osteoporosis frequently develops in men younger than sixty-five. This type of osteoporosis is thought to be triggered by any number of conditions, including alcohol consumption and tobacco use – which are usually at a higher rate than women, the use of certain medications, and low testosterone – a condition which happens to many men as they age.
Treatments for men with osteoporosis are the same as the treatments used for women and include increased calcium intake, exercise, and practicing healthy habits. Men who have idiopathic forms of osteoporosis may also have treatments that include testosterone injections, changes in medications, and also may require changes in diet and limiting the use of alcohol and tobacco. Additionally, men with osteoporosis should increase their daily intake of vitamin D.
Do you have questions about osteoporosis and risks of fracture? Call Advanced Radiology at 855.201.1519 today.