Other Disease/ Disorders

Osteoporosis During Menopause

What is osteoporosis?

  • It is a condition in which the bones become thin, brittle, and weak increasing the risk and likelihood of sudden fractures. Fractures can lead to disability. Fractures caused by osteoporosis have been linked to an increased risk of death

Who gets it?

  • Men and Women above age 50 are at risk of osteoporosis
  • But Women are 5 times at more risk than men
  • On an average, women lose up to 10 % of their bone mass in the first 5 years after menopause.

How menopause influences osteoporosis?

  • Estrogen, a female hormone, protects against bone loss. After menopause, the ovaries produce very little estrogen
  • Osteoporosis during menopause is triggered by rapid decrease levels of estrogen which starts 1 year before the final menstrual period and lasts for about 3 years.
  • The natural effects of aging on bones may contribute to this bone loss as well

What are risks associated with Osteoporosis during Menopause?

  • Certain medications
  • Low calcium intake
  • Vitamin D insufficiency
  • Excess vitamin A
  • High caffeine intake
  • High salt intake
  • Aluminum (in antacids)
  • Alcohol (three or more drinks per day)
  • Not getting enough physical activity or being immobile
  • Smoking (including secondhand smoke)
  • Falling
  • Being thin

What are Symptoms associated Menopausal Osteoporosis?

  • Bone Fracture
  • Bone pain tenderness
  • Height loss
  • Spinal deformities
  • Weak and brittle nails

How to prevent menopausal osteporosis?

  • Eat Food rich in calcium vitamin D, proteins and phytoestrogens
  • Exercise regularly to maintain healthy weight and strong bones by doing 150 minutes of exercise a week, which works out to be about 30 minutes on most days of the week
  • Limit your intake of alcohol and quit smoking

Treatment for menopausal osteoporosis?

A variety of treatments can help stop the development of osteoporosis. Here are some steps you can take to prevent bone deterioration:

  • Take calcium and vitamin D supplements
  • Calcium can help you to build strong bones and keep them strong as you age.
  • The National Institutes of Health (NIH) recommends that people ages 19 to 50 get 1,000 milligrams (mg) of calcium each day.
  • Women over 50 and all adults over 70 should get at least 1,200 mg of calcium each day.
  • If you can’t get adequate calcium through food sources like dark, leafy greens, like spinach, kale, and collards; dairy foods, such as yogurt, milk, and cheese , talk with your doctor about supplements.
  • Vitamin D is important for healthy bones, as your body can’t properly absorb calcium without it.
  • You can increase your intake of vitamin D by eating foods fortified with vitamin D (orange juice, cereal, and milk)
  • Sun exposure is the natural way the body makes vitamin D. But the time it takes in the sun to produce vitamin D varies depending on time of day, the environment, where you live, and the natural pigment of your skin.

Note : For people concerned with skin cancer or for those who wish to get their vitamin D in other ways, supplements are available.

Ask your doctor about prescription medications and injectable bone-building agents


This information is intended for Healthcare Professionals in Sri Lanka only

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