Senile Osteoporosis: Symptoms, Causes, Treatment, and Prevention

    Senile Osteoporosis: Symptoms, Causes, Treatment, and Prevention

    Senile osteoporosis is one of the most common bone ailments among the elderly. Read on to learn what its symptoms are, its causes, treatment, and how to prevent it from happening.

    What is senile osteoporosis?

    Senile osteoporosis is osteoporosis that affects a person in their old age. What happens is that as a person grows older, the density of their bones decreases.

    This condition is commonly found among people aged 70 and above. According to research done on osteoporosis, what happens is that as people grow older, the development of osteoblasts slow down. Osteoblasts are bone cells that help make up the structure of our bones. When this happens, bone formation starts slowing down, which makes a person’s bones weaker1.

    Senile osteoporosis is one of the main reasons why elderly people need to be taken care of2. It affects both men and women, but women are at a greater risk of developing the disease since they are also prone to postmenopausal osteoporosis. This is because osteoporosis is closely related to estrogen deficiency.

    Symptoms

    At first, the symptoms of osteoporosis might not be evident, especially if it’s in the early stages. But as a person grows older, these symptoms might start to manifest3:

    • Back pain
    • Decrease in height
    • Change in posture
    • Being more prone to fractures

    If any of these symptoms start to appear, it would be best to consult a doctor as soon as possible. While osteoporosis can’t be completely reversed, there are a number of ways that it can be slowed down and managed. The sooner a person gets treatment, the better the outcome would be since their bone loss will not be as severe as in the later stages of senile osteoporosis.

    Causes

    The bones in our body are constantly being broken down and replaced by new bone. This is what keeps our bones strong and healthy. However, as we grow older, the process starts to slow down. Most people reach the peak of their bone density by age 30.

    Beyond that age, bone density decreases since bone is being broken down faster than it is being made. In the case of senile osteoporosis, which happens when a person is in their 70s, the production of new bone has slowed down to the point that it is significantly affecting the structural integrity of the bone. This makes bones more fragile since they’re not as dense as before, and fall or injuries that people can usually brush off can prove to be very dangerous and cause fractures.

    The most common injury that people with senile osteoporosis might experience is hip fracture4. This can be risky since patients might not be able to walk after the injury. In worse cases, they might even need to rely on assisted care. So it is important to watch out for the symptoms of this disease as it can cause serious problems if ignored.

    Treatment and Prevention

    In terms of treatment, vitamin D and calcium tablets can help supplement the body with the resources it needs to build new bones. In addition to this, drugs that improve bone formation can prove to be useful as it helps keep a person’s bones strong despite having osteoporosis.

    While not a form of treatment for senile osteoporosis per se, injury prevention will greatly help patients with osteoporosis. For example, hip injuries are one of the most common problems for patients with osteoporosis. So what doctors can do is to devise steps on how to manage and reduce the fall risk of patients with the said disease. This can help them lead healthier lives and reduce the risk of serious injury from osteoporosis.

    As far as preventing senile osteoporosis goes, the best thing to do would be to start at an early age. Having good bone density while you’re young means that you’ll retain more bone density as you grow older. Women in particular need to be mindful of this as pregnancy, menopause and old age all contribute to osteoporosis.

    Learn more about Osteoporosis here.

    Hello Health Group does not provide medical advice, diagnosis or treatment.

    Sources

    1 Senile Osteoporosis: The Involvement of Differentiation and Senescence of Bone Marrow Stromal Cells – PubMed, https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/31948061/, Accessed November 17, 2021

    2 SENILE OSTEOPOROSIS on JSTOR, https://www.jstor.org/stable/45199634, Accessed November 17, 2021

    3 Osteoporosis – Symptoms and causes – Mayo Clinic, https://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/osteoporosis/symptoms-causes/syc-20351968, Accessed November 17, 2021

    4 Senile Osteoporosis (Chapter 16) – The Osteoporosis Primer, https://www.cambridge.org/core/books/abs/osteoporosis-primer/senile-osteoporosis/2F62B41E2985F86BDBA09D2F709D4941, Accessed November 17, 2021

    5 Prevention and treatment of senile osteoporosis and hip fractures – PubMed, https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/19277006/, Accessed November 17, 2021

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    Written by Jan Alwyn Batara Updated 2 weeks ago
    Medically reviewed by Jezreel Esguerra, MD