Senile osteoporosis is bone loss that results from aging. It may cause no symptoms at first, but it can lead to fractures and difficulty moving.
Senile osteoporosis causes bone loss, and it develops as an adult grows older. It can weaken bones and increase the risk of fractures and other injuries.
This article looks at the symptoms, causes, and treatments of senile osteoporosis.
Osteoporosis causes bone mass and strength to decrease. This increases the risk of bones breaking.
Senile osteoporosis is a type that results from aging, and it typically begins in a person’s 70s.
Osteoporosis can stem from a variety of factors. It becomes more common as people age, and particularly during menopause. “Postmenopausal osteoporosis” refers to bone loss after menopause.
Any older adult can develop senile osteoporosis.
This may cause no symptoms at first. The first sign may be a broken bone or vertebral fracture, which is a collapse of a vertebra in the spine.
Symptoms of a vertebral fracture include:
Senile osteoporosis can make the bones fragile, so they can break easily. This may mean that a bone fractures due to something that would not break a healthy bone, such as:
People with senile osteoporosis typically experience a progressive loss of bone mass. In this case, the effects worsen over time.
People experience bone loss and a slower rate of bone growth as they age. A decrease in bone mass means that the bones can weaken over time, which increases the risk of senile osteoporosis.
Anyone can develop senile osteoporosis, but it is more common and sometimes more severe in women, due to hormonal shifts, such as the rapid changes in estrogen levels resulting from menopause. Men experience a more gradual reduction in testosterone as they age.
Risk factors for senile osteoporosis, beyond aging, include:
The National Institutes of Health (NIH) report that the following medical conditions can also increase the risk:
The NIH also observe that the long-term use of some drugs can increase the risk of osteoporosis. These drugs include:
Treatment for senile osteoporosis may include:
Regular weight-bearing exercises can improve bone health. Examples include walking, swimming, dancing, playing tennis, weight training, and climbing stairs. These forms of exercise can help by increasing strength, coordination, and balance. This reduces the risk of falling and can make carrying out everyday tasks easier.
The following strategies can help prevent falls:
It is important to let a healthcare professional know about any falls. They can make any necessary adjustments to a treatment plan and provide guidance about prevention.
Having a diet with enough calcium and vitamin D is important in preventing bone loss. A person might add calcium-rich foods and drinks to their diet, such as:
The skin absorbs vitamin D through sunlight. Some foods also contain vitamin D, such as:
Anyone who is not getting enough vitamin D may need to take a supplement. The NIH recommends the following daily amounts of calcium and vitamin D for older adults:
Certain medications may help slow down or prevent bone loss in people with senile osteoporosis. Some examples of these drugs include:
Some strategies for preventing senile osteoporosis may include:
Senile osteoporosis causes bone loss, which increases the risk of fractures. Treatment and self-care strategies can slow the progression, help prevent bone weakness, and reduce the risk of fractures.
Lifestyle and dietary changes can also protect against further bone loss and reduce the risk of falls.
Let a healthcare professional know about:
Senile osteoporosis is bone loss that results from aging. It can develop in any older adult, especially over the age of 70.
A fracture from a minor fall or injury may be the first sign of senile osteoporosis. Medications and dietary and lifestyle changes can help prevent further bone loss. Taking steps to prevent falls is also key in reducing the risk of fractures.
Last medically reviewed on November 28, 2021
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