Dr Parveen Khan; Consultant Gynecologist at Fauji Foundation Hospital Lahore
What is osteoporosis?
Ans: 10 million Pakistanis are at risk of Osteoporosis. Every second woman and one out of six men in the world are suffering from osteoporosis. According to a survey 72% people lead a sedentary lifestyle and vitamin D deficiency among Pakistani women has been reported to be as high as 83%, moreover the Pakistani diet has been found to be deficient in calcium.
2. What is osteoporosis?
Ans: Osteoporosis is loss of bone mass, mainly caused by calcium depletion although genetic factors can also be involved, and Asians with lower bone density than other races are at particularly high risk of developing what can be quite literally a crippling disease.
What factors lead to osteoporosis?
Ans: Lack of vitamin D, improper diet, soft drinks and use of steroids for a long time. Women specially after the age of menopause are more prone to the disease. It is a silent killer due to non presence of any primary symptoms.
How is it diagnosed?
Ans: It is rarely diagnosed until something goes wrong, like a persistent backache, or joint ache or a fracture at which point a Dr. may suggest that a bone density scan be carried out to determine if osteoporosis is present.
How can you prevent Osteoporosis?
Ans: You can prevent Osteoporosis by proper intake of calcium, eating fresh fruits and vegetables, with exposure to sunlight in addition to bringing a positive change in lifestyle and regular exercises to strengthen your bones, regular exercise can increase bone mass, especially in younger people with growing bones. Besides taking appropriate medication. Aim to take 1000mg of calcium every day, either in your diet or as a supplement. Good sources of calcium include-milk and dairy product, such as cheese and yogurt, dried apricots or figs and some green leafy vegetables.
The public should be given awareness about osteoporosis, as its prevention is more beneficial to society.