(Depending on size)

  • A common condition, particularly among elderly women, osteoporosis is the reduction of bone density.
  • Osteoporosis affects both the dense cortical portion on the outside of a bone and the spongy bone inside.
  • Causes include age, low body mass, family history, smoking, malnutrition, alcoholism, insufficient physical activity and certain medications and toxins. It is also associated with a number of chronic diseases.
  • The primary risk is that of fracture, particularly of the hip, a potentially devastating event in the elderly. In severely osteoporotic patients, healing may be slow and insufficient.
  • Treatment depends on the cause but includes medication, dietary changes, and exercise.