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What is Osteoporosis ?

Osteoporosis is the loss of bone mass and resulting changes in bone structure. It increases the likelihood of bone fractures, especially in the spine, wrist and hip. About 4.5 million American women over the age of 50 have osteoporosis. It is more common in non-Hispanic white and Asian women. Overall, one in two women and one in six men in this age bracket will suffer an osteoporosis-related fracture at some point in their lives.  

About 4.5 million American women over the age of 50 have osteoporosis


Symptoms of Osteoporosis

Osteoporosis has no symptoms. Unfortunately, the first indication of the condition is often a fracture or broken bone. 

1 in 2 women over the age of 50 will suffer an osteoporosis-related fracture


Diagnosis of Osteoporosis

The primary means for diagnosing osteoporosis is bone mineral density testing. It measures the amount of bone in different parts of the body. Dual energy X-ray absorptiometry (referred to as DEXA), a quick and painless scan similar to an x-ray, is the standard test to measure BMD.   

1 in 6 men over the age of 50 will suffer an osteoporosis-related fracture


Treatments for Osteoporosis

Medications and supplements are the most common treatments for osteoporosis. Different classifications of drugs can help treat osteoporosis by slowing bone loss or speeding up bone formation. Some of these drugs are Bisphosphonate family (Alendronate, Risedronate, Ibandronate, Zoledronic acid), Evista, Denosumab, Teriparatide, Abaloparatide, Romosozumab. Studies have shown they can decrease the risk of fractures. Those patients with osteoporosis should also ensure their diets include enough calcium and Vitamin D as required for their age. Physical activity has also been shown to be of benefit, especially weight-bearing exercises. 

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Current medications help slow down bone loss or accelerate bone formation to decrease the risk of fractures.

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Calcium and Vitamin D have been shown to help prevent bone loss.

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Physical activity

Weight-bearing exercise in particular can help keep bones dense.


Clinical Trials

The rheumatologists at Saint John’s Physician Partners have been integrally involved in the development of medications that treat inflammatory arthritis conditions for decades. They were involved in the clinical trials that led to the approval at the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for medications that treat rheumatoid arthritis (RA), psoriatic arthritis (PsA), ankylosing spondylitis (SpA), osteoarthritis, and other bone and skin conditions like osteoporosis and psoriasis advanced therapies, some of which are biologic treatments. 


Osteoporosis Specialists

Orrin Troum, M.D. and Amro Elbalkhi, M.D. provide consultation, diagnosis, and treatment for rheumatic diseases including inflammatory arthritis (rheumatoid arthritis, psoriatic arthritis, ankylosing spondylitis), scleroderma, myositis, gout, lupus, osteoarthritis, and osteoporosis. The Medical Doctors of Saint Johns strive to provide world class care and a personalized treatment plan for all patients and their families.  

2336 Santa Monica Blvd., Suite 207, Santa Monica, CA 90404

2336 Santa Monica Blvd., Suite 207, Santa Monica, CA 90404