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Osteoporosis Treatments

Treatment

Treatment includes:

Nutrition

Decrease your intake of caffeinated beverages and alcohol. Eat a balanced diet rich in calcium and vitamin D. Calcium is in:

  • Dairy products
  • Green leafy vegetables
  • Canned fish with bones
  • Calcium-fortified products

Smoking

Do not smoke. If you smoke, quit.

Exercise

Exercise improves bone health. It also increases muscle strength, coordination, and balance. Do weight-bearing and strength-training exercises for maximum benefit. Balance training may prevent falls and fractures.

Dietary Supplements

People who cannot eat enough calcium from food might want to take calcium supplements. Calcium citrate has the best absorption and is well-tolerated. Other vitamins and minerals may be recommended, including vitamin D, magnesium , potassium , and vitamin K . A study showed that Japanese postmenopausal women who took vitamin K supplements had a reduced rate of fractures. Talk to your doctor before taking herbs or supplements.

Medications

Medications to prevent bone loss, increase bone density, and reduce the risk of spine and hip fractures:

Hormone Replacement Therapy (HRT)

Although HRT (including estrogen replacement therapy, or ERT) may cut the risk of osteoporosis in half, research shows a strong association between longer-term HRT or ERT use and a significantly increased risk of invasive breast cancer , strokes , heart attacks , and blood clots. Be sure to discuss all of the health risks and benefits of hormone therapy with your doctor to find out if it is right for you.

HRT therapy may include:

  • Estrogen alone (ERT)
  • Estrogen and progestin—frequently preferred for women with an intact uterus because ERT slightly increases the risk of uterine cancer
  • Foods containing soy—may improve bone mass because these foods contain plant estrogens

HRT can:

  • Reduce bone loss
  • Increase bone density
  • Reduce the risk of hip and spinal fractures in postmenopausal women

Safety Measures

Falls can increase the chance of fracture in someone with osteoporosis. Here are ways to prevent falls:

  • Use a cane or walker for stability.
  • Wear rubber-soled shoes for traction.
  • Use plastic or carpet runners when possible.
  • Keep rooms free of clutter.
  • Install grab bars in bathrooms.

Please be aware that this information is provided to supplement the care provided by your physician. It is neither intended nor implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice. CALL YOUR HEALTHCARE PROVIDER IMMEDIATELY IF YOU THINK YOU MAY HAVE A MEDICAL EMERGENCY. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider prior to starting any new treatment or with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition. Copyright © 2019 EBSCO Publishing All rights reserved.

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