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35. Picture of Osteoporosis
Osteoporosis: Thinning of the bones with reduction in bone mass due to depletion of calcium and bone protein. Osteoporosis predisposes a person to fractures, which are often slow to heal and heal poorly. It is more common in older adults, particularly post-menopausal women; in patients on steroids; and in those who take steroidal drugs. Unchecked osteoporosis can lead to changes in posture, physical abnormality (particularly the form of hunched back known colloquially as "dowager's hump"), and decreased mobility.
Osteoporosis can be detected by using tests that measure bone density. Treatment of osteoporosis includes ensuring that the diet contain adequate calcium and other minerals needed to promote new bone growth, and for post-menopausal women, estrogen or combination hormone supplements.
Text: MedicineNet, Inc.
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