Osteoporosis is a condition causing brittleness and weakness of the bones
Osteoporosis, or porous bone, is a disease identified by a low bone mass and deterioration of the structure of the bone tissue. This deterioration leads to fragile and brittle bones and an increased risk of fractures of the hip, spine, and wrist.
Osteoporosis is caused by deterioration and loss of bone. Bones are in a constant state of renewal, meaning new bone is made and old bone is broken down. For most individuals, peak bone mass is in their early 20's, and with age the bone is lost faster than it is created. Contributing factors are aging, estrogen deficiency, low vitamin D and calcium intake, and other medical disorders.
Osteoporosis often begins as a disease without obvious symptoms. Loss of bone density is a gradual process, and as such, development of symptoms may occur either gradually through bone aches and deformities, or suddenly through a collapse or fracture of the bone resulting in sudden or severe pain.
In treating osteoporosis, generally, prevention is more successful than treatment because it is easier to prevent loss of bone density than to restore density. When medical treatment is appropriate, there are several therapeutics that can help slow down bone loss, and in some cases, stimulate new bone growth.