Osteoporosis (literally porous bone) was once considered an inevitable consequence of aging. This is no longer the case. While some bone loss is natural with age, osteoporosis refers to an atypically low bone mineral density that can make your bones prone to debilitating fracture.
Why Does Osteoporosis Occur?
Osteoporosis occurs when new bone is no longer made as fast as it is lost. As a result, the bones become more porous (less dense) and eventually brittle and weak. Weaker bones have less structural integrity and are more likely to fracture.
What is Bone Strength?
Bones are strong if they can withstand the forces exerted on them during our daily life activities. Our bones must be strong enough to support our mass against the force of gravity and should be able to sustain the impact of our movements, collisions and falls.
Bone strength is determined by the quality and microstructure of the bone matrix and by bone density, which represent the size, geometry and mineralization of bone material.
Secondary osteoporosis refers to bone weakening caused incidentally by another disease or condition. Some of the conditions currently believed to deteriorate bone health include:
The causes of osteoporosis are said to be “heterogeneous” because many different conditions can lead to loss of bone density.