Osteoporosis can occur when there is a loss of bone density and strength due to a variety of factors.
Osteoporosis may be related to aging, certain types of medications, or other health related conditions. A diagnosis of osteoporosis is often made while diagnosing a fracture.
It is important that osteoporosis is diagnosed early so that accurate and aggressive treatment management can occur in order to reach the best outcome.
Not only the financial cost but the health costs associated with a missed diagnosis of or even an inaccurate diagnosis of osteoporosis can be very high. The health consequences associated with an inaccurate or omitted diagnosis of osteoporosis can be seen for years to come.
When initially diagnosed saying osteoporosis, your physician must make the determination of whether the osteoporosis is a primary or secondary diagnosis. Primary osteoporosis means it that the diagnosis is a stand-alone diagnosis, meaning that there is no other health issue that is causing it.
However, with a secondary diagnosis of osteoporosis this means that there is another health condition which is causing the osteoporosis. Some other health conditions which can lead to a secondary diagnosis of osteoporosis include conditions such as multiple myeloma, lymphoma, diabetes, Cushing's disease, hyperthyroidism, osteogenesis imperfecta, and even Marfan's syndrome.
The best medical test on today's market for diagnosing osteoporosis is the DEXA scan. Considered the gold standard by many healthcare providers, the DEXA scan is completely painless for patients and only takes about 10 minutes to perform. The scan uses limited amounts of radiation to scan the bones of the wrist, the spine or the hip to assess general bone density.
This can help your physician to make a definitive diagnosis of osteoporosis as well as help your physician to determine if compared to others in your age and gender control group you have a higher risk of developing an osteoporosis related fracture.
Diagnosing osteoporosis is a fairly straightforward procedure that your general healthcare provider can handle. But even though it is an easy diagnosis to make, it is one that is critical to your overall health.
So as you age and particularly if you are female or if you have other health conditions that put you at risk for osteoporosis, make sure that you work closely with your physician to make sure that you are appropriately screened for osteoporosis.
Diagnosing osteoporosis is one diagnosis that you can't afford for your healthcare provider to miss.
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