Causes and symptoms of osteoporosis, firstthe signs

Update: December 2018

See also:

  • Treatment of osteoporosis with modern methods
  • Osteoporosis treatment with folk remedies
  • Bisphosphonates for osteoporosis treatment

Osteoporosis develops unnoticed, often without the presence of a subjective
symptoms, and is diagnosed already when

Osteoporosis is the process of bone loss of mineral density due to
потери calcium. The disease is extremely
an actual problem, which in its significance is on the fourth
place in a series of noncommunicable diseases, after cardiovascular and
cancer, diabetes and has features
�”Silent epidemic.”

The data of individual experts show that with existing
the rate of increase in the number of people with osteoporosis, by the middle of the XXI century.
the disease will become a mass epidemic.

Definition of the disease

Today there is a clear definition of the concept
�”osteoporosis”. It assumes that it is not separate, but
progressive systemic metabolic (metabolic) disease
skeleton, characterized by low bone density and violation of their
microarchitecture. Study of the cause of the disease, its
development mechanism and the effects allowed to add to it
the definition is also such a thing as a decrease in bone strength,
следствием чего является повышенный риск fractures. Strength
is a single component of bone mineral density,
its architectonics, the quantity and quality of collagen, etc.

Thus, osteoporosis is characterized by:

  • pathological changes in the structure inside the bones;
  • the predominance of the processes of decay and destruction of bone tissue over
    its regeneration;
  • as a result – a decrease in bone mass, increased fragility
    bones and a decrease in their strength.


In Europe, Japan and the USA, 75 million people suffer from osteoporosis, 1/3 of
of which women are over 50, every 4th of them had
found deformity of at least one vertebra. In America, 10 million
people suffer from osteoporosis, of whom 8 million are women. 80% of women
over 50 and almost all men and women over 75 are amazed
this disease.

Although in Russia, osteoporosis is not recognized as a disease of social significance,
nonetheless of its medical and socioeconomic significance
evidenced by some statistics that
published in early 2013 in an article following the summit on
osteoporosis, held at the end of 2012 in St. Petersburg. AT
reports on the results of epidemiological studies conducted
in the same year in several Russian cities, it is noted that:
Причины и симптомы остеопороза

  • prevalence of osteoporosis in people over 50
    averages 28%;
  • a complication such as a hip fracture as a result
    insignificant load, which was previously encountered only in the elderly
    age, has become frequent in women after 40 years, and 2 – 4 times
    more often than men;
  • mortality in the first year of life after an intraarticular fracture
    tibia with osteoporosis – 20–35%;
  • every minute in Russia 17 lower fractures are recorded
    limbs and 5 vertebral fractures associated with osteoporosis, and
    every 5 minutes – a fracture in the upper thigh, which
    accompanied by disability and high mortality.

These numbers indicate the need to improve the quality of early
diagnosing and taking action on active prophylaxis

Especially important is the awareness of the population about the early signs
symptoms of osteoporosis of the joints and spine, that in
in most cases it is one of the manifestations of aging
organism. Over 200 million people suffer from this social
a disease. The more developed a society, the more cases
osteoporosis. It’s impossible to prevent them, but with information about
mechanisms of disease and contributing factors can
delay, slow down its development and avoid serious complications.

Physiological processes

Bone is a complex system in which throughout
life, renewal, internal restructuring,
change in length, thickness, width, that is, shaping its fabric
(remodeling). The meaning of remodeling is to adapt
properties of bones to changing loads and conditions of external

ATсе эти процессы означают постоянное рассасывание, разрушение
bone tissue through osteoclast cells and its restoration
with the participation of osteoblasts. Osteoblasts synthesize bone fibers,
regulate the entry of calcium ions into the tissue, turning
subsequently into mature bone cells.

Constant physiological destruction is accompanied by an exit to
blood from bone tissue calcium salts, and recovery
microdamages – reverse transition of minerals.

up to 25 years The predominance of restoration over destruction occurs approximately
up to 25 years, после чего устанавливается их относительное
35-40 years old From 35 to 40 years of age, the reverse process occurs, in
the result of which the bone mass is lost annually by 0.3 –
60-70 years old  In women, physiological bone loss after offensive
menopaus up to 60 – 70 years of age occur faster
rates (up to 2–5% annually).

Studies have shown that throughout life the outer layer
female bones (cortical) lose up to 35%, and lamellar
(trabecular) – 50% of its mass. In men, these figures
make up 15–20 and 20–30% respectively.

Regulation by remodeling is carried out by hormones
thyroid gland (calcitonin and others), parathyroid glands
(parathyroid hormone), pancreas (insulin), sex glands, derivatives
vitamin “D”, adrenal hormones, pituitary,
prostaglandins, etc.

Classification of osteoporosis

Its development is due to the excess physiological speed
bone loss resulting in peak onset
magnitude bone fracture occurs. Low mineralization can
be the result of:

  • lack of bone mass in youth;
  • its rapid losses in later periods of life.

Predisposing factors

Factors contributing to insufficient bone mass accumulation
divided into:

  • Genetic

carriage-related altered collagen genes,
osteoprotegerin (suppresses bone destruction), as well as affecting
the action of vitamin “D”, which determines the absorption of calcium ions,
and others;

  • Non-genetic

including fetal imbalance,
lack of calcium intake by the mother during pregnancy,
premature birth and low weight in the first year of life after
birth, delayed sexual development, insufficient consumption
products containing calcium, before puberty.
It prevents the absorption of calcium in the intestine and its accumulation in the bones
frequent use in children in adolescence aerated
drinks (Fanta, Pepsi-Cola), kvass, chronic diseases
intestinal, unhealthy diet. In addition, violations
menstrual cycle, pregnancy, extinction of the function of the sex glands
in women (pre- and menopausal periods), decreased testicular function in
men after 50 – 60 years lead to the loss of already accumulated

So, the development of osteoporosis is caused by risk factors:

  • Genetic (genetic predisposition);
  • Hormonal and age – female gender, dysfunction
    endocrine glands, age after 65 years;
  • Internal diseases – autoimmune disorders,
    blood diseases, myeloma, digestive and
    cardiovascular system, kidney, obstructive pulmonary disease
    (bronchial asthma, see obstructive bronchitis in adults);
  • Lifestyle – eating low in foods
    calcium, excess or, on the contrary, very low body weight, low
    physical activity, smoking, frequent drinking
  • Medications (glucocorticoids, immunosuppressants,
    some diuretics, oral contraceptives, anticonvulsants,
    anticoagulants (heparin), tetracyclines, etc.).
  • Abuse of cosmetics, household chemicals brings menopause
    women and increases the risk of osteoporosis.

Types of osteoporosis

Depending on the reasons, it is divided into primary as
the result of the body’s natural aging, and secondary.

Read also on the topic:

  • Osteoporosis treatment with folk remedies
  • Osteoporosis treatment methods
  • Symptoms of osteoarthritis of the knee joint
  • Treatment of osteoarthritis of the knee
  • Osteoarthritis of the hip joint: treatment, symptoms
Types of primary osteoporosis:
  • Idiopathic (reasons not established). It can develop in
    any age
  • Постменопаузальный (у женщин)
  • Juvenile (teenage)
  • Osteoporosis adults
  • Senile (senile)
Types of secondary osteoporosis is caused by:
  • Endocrine diseases (reduced synthesis of genital
    hormones, dysfunction of the thyroid, parathyroid,
    pancreas, adrenal glands).
  • Connective tissue diseases (rheumatism, systemic
    lupus erythematosus, osteoarthritis, rheumatoid arthritis).
  • Blood diseases.
  • Diseases of the digestive tract contributing
    нарушению всасывания calcium.
  • Kidney disease (Fanconi syndrome, chronic renal
  • Other diseases leading to bone destruction.

Symptoms – clinical manifestations of osteoporosis

According to statistics, the symptoms of osteoporosis in women
after 50 years, expressed in varying degrees, are detected in 30%, which
due mainly to a decrease in the synthesis of estrogen in the body.
The danger of the disease is slow asymptomatic
development or in the appearance of minor symptoms that even
Doctors refer to manifestations of arthritis of an exchange nature. Despite
the fact that arthritis and osteoporosis develop at the same time is
various diseases: osteoporosis is a systemic disease. To the most
The first signs of osteoporosis include:

Early symptoms of osteoporosis:

  • aches, soreness in bones, especially when changing
  • the development of periodontal disease and nail changes;
  • rapid fatigue, episodes of rapid heartbeat;
  • early appearance of gray hair;
  • jerky muscle contractions of the legs at night, especially in

Despite на поражение всей костной системы, основные manifestations
in later stages of development are associated with the spinal column and
joints. Symptoms of osteoporosis of the spine associated with compression
the anterior parts of the vertebral bodies, resulting in their wedge-shaped
deformities in the upper and middle thoracic and upper lumbar
parts of the spine. Fractures of the individual vertebrae of the thoracic region
may occur unnoticed, accompanied by slight pain.
The main symptoms of spinal lesions:

  • Fatigue of the muscles of the back, dull pain, especially in
    areas of greatest vertebral deformity. Sometimes they acquire
    paroxysmal character.
  • Spinal mobility restriction due to
    рефлекторно-защитного спазма мышц спины. Women have a sign
    osteoporosis is a scoliotic curvature with progressive
    limited mobility.
  • Stoop – “posture of the petitioner”, a violation of posture and height of 5 cm
    over several years, especially with vertebral fractures in
    middle thoracic.
  • The formation of “senile hump”.
  • Small skin folds on the side surfaces of the abdomen.

Along with the spine, when pain and heaviness are felt more often in
грудном и поясничном отделе,   поражаются головки костей,
participating in the formation of large joints, mainly
hip, knee, shoulder, less often – small (wrist,
joints of hands and feet). It is possible for the fingers to twist when they
take the form of drum sticks, the curvature of the legs in the form

Наиболее распространенными и угрожающими являются симптомы
osteoporosis of the hip joint, due to the possibility of development
necrosis of the bone head and fracture in the femoral neck. Such
fractures are more often spontaneous, (not correlated with the severity of the blow or
injury), even the slightest fall can cause a fracture.

Changing posture, reducing height, changing the fit of the head
characteristic of osteoporosis in women (postmenopausal). If a
fractures of the lumbar and thoracic vertebrae occur with static
loads, it is most often the result of long-term therapy
steroids or metastasis of tumors from various organs to
example of the stomach.

The common symptoms of osteoporosis are soreness in
calm, aggravated by walking, in the area of ​​the joint and
in the lumbar spine due to the tension of the lumbar muscles
and thigh muscles, as well as limiting mobility in the area
hip joint. Consequences of intraarticular hip fractures
– disability, and sometimes more serious complications during
next year after the fracture.

Slowing down the development of osteoporosis, prevention
complications are possible with timely visit to the doctor, conducting
laboratory, instrumental diagnostics and receiving recommendations
in terms of treatment and remedial therapy. Everybody should remember this.
especially middle-aged women.

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