font size

Osteoporosis (cont.)

Medical Author:
Medical Editor:

Prevention of hip fractures in elderly people with osteoporosis

The FDA has approved hip protector garments for the prevention of hip fractures in elderly people with known osteoporosis. Brand names available include Hipsaver and Safehip. These can be helpful for selected patients who are in the nursing-home environment, although the real extent of protection against hip fractures that is gained with use of hip protectors is controversial.

Additionally, for those elderly people who use canes for walking, etc., it is essential that the rubber tips of the canes are regularly checked for any signs of wear. When this rubber wears through it presents a serious risk of causing the cane (and, therefore, the person) to slip, which can result in serious bodily harm -- including hip fracture.

Controversy

Currently, it is not clear as to how long patients with osteoporosis being treated with bisphosphonates should continue the bisphosphonate treatment. Many doctors are interrupting treatment for a "drug holiday" off of the drug as it may not be necessary after five to seven years. Guidelines for duration of treatment of osteoporosis with bisphosphonates are being developed.

What are complications of osteoporosis?

The primary complication of osteoporosis is bone fracture. This may lead to no symptoms or be associated with severe, intractable pain. Recurrent fractures are common and can lead to deteriorating skeletal structure. Occasionally, fractures of the spinal vertebrae can push bone into adjacent nerves and/or spinal cord. This can require neurosurgical intervention. Osteoporotic vertebral fractures can also be relieved by vertebroplasty (kyphoplasty) procedures whereby the collapsed vertebra is inflated by a balloon and a cement (methylmethacrylate) is injected to reform structure to the vertebra.

Repeated vertebral compression fractures can lead to severe deformity of the spine of the chest (kyphosis) that can compromise breathing along with cause extreme loss of height. This can increase the risk of problems with any respiratory infections.

Medically Reviewed by a Doctor on 8/29/2014

Patient Comments

Viewers share their comments

Osteoporosis - Symptoms Question: What were your symptoms at the onset of your osteoporosis?
Osteoporosis - Treatment Question: What kinds of treatment, including medication or supplements, have you tried for your osteoporosis?
Osteoporosis - Share Your Experience Question: Do you or a relative have osteoporosis? Please share your experience.
Osteoporosis - Risk Factors and Causes Question: Do you have any risk factors for osteoporosis? What are they?
Osteoporosis - Lifestyle Changes Question: What lifestyle changes (diet, exercise, quitting smoking or alcohol) have you made to manage your osteoporosis?
Osteoporosis - Hormone Therapy Experience Question: Have you been prescribed hormone therapy to treat your osteoporosis? What was your experience?
Osteoporosis - Medications Question: What medications have been prescribed to treat your osteoporosis?
Osteoporosis - Complications Question: Have you had any complications related to your osteoporosis? If so, what were they?
Source: MedicineNet.com
http://www.medicinenet.com/osteoporosis/article.htm

Healthy Bones

Get tips and advances in treatment.

advertisement
advertisement
Use Pill Finder Find it Now See Interactions

Pill Identifier on RxList

  • quick, easy,
    pill identification

Find a Local Pharmacy

  • including 24 hour, pharmacies

Interaction Checker

  • Check potential drug interactions
Search the Medical Dictionary for Health Definitions & Medical Abbreviations

NIH talks about Ebola on WebMD