The following information is provided by Dr. Brienne J. Loy, family medicine physician at Poudre Valley Medical Group Family Medicine in Fort Collins. Dr. Loy has special interests in women's health, sports medicine and general primary care for patients of all ages.
Q: What is osteoporosis?
Osteoporosis is a disease that occurs in both men and women in which the density and quality of bone are reduced, thereby increasing the chance for fracture. Fortunately, osteoporosis is a largely treatable condition and, with a combination of lifestyle changes and appropriate medical treatment, many fractures can be avoided.
Q: What are the risk factors?
There are certain risk factors that cannot be changed, but people should be aware of them so that they can take the necessary steps to reduce bone mineral loss. Some of the more common risk factors include age (over 60), female gender, family history, previous fracture, menopause and arthritis. Among the risk factors that can change to improve bone health are smoking, frequent alcohol use, low body mass index, poor nutrition, insufficient exercise, Vitamin D and calcium deficiencies and frequent falls.
Q: When should I start screening for osteoporosis?
Assessing your bone health is just as important as your yearly pap smears and mammo¬grams. All women age 65 and over should be screened for osteoporosis. But for women between ages 50 and 64 with high risk factors, earlier screening is recommended.
Dr. Brienne J. Loy is now welcoming new patients. To make an appointment, call 970.392.4752.
Family Health Care of the Rockies
2121 E. Harmony Road, Suite 230 (Building A)
Fort Collins, CO 80528