Bengaluru: Osteoporosis, which leads to weak and brittle bones, is on the rise among women in India.
The ailment sets in when the bone density decreases, where the body reabsorbs more bone tissue and produces less to replace it. The bones become weaker and increase the risk of fractures mainly in hips, wrists and spinal cord.
Worldwide, osteoporosis causes more than 8.9 a million fractures annually, resulting in an osteoporosis fracture every 3 seconds.
Among adults in India, Vitamin D deficiency is associated with low bone mass and muscle weakness, which results in an increased risk of fractures and bone disorders such as osteoporosis.
A recent study revealed that 70%-90% of Indians are Vitamin D deficient. By the age of 80, nearly half of all women show on an X-ray that they have had a fracture of their spine. It also showed that pregnant women in India have up to 84% Vitamin D deficiency.
Osteoporosis falls into two categories
Senile Osteoporosis (age related both in men and women) and postmenopausal osteoporosis (mainly in women). In order to stay healthy and to avoid bone-related issues a minimum intake of 300 mg calcium is mandatory. As the elderly patients are increasing in the country, the number of cases is also on the rise.
Even younger generation is vulnerable to osteoporosis due to their life styles, dietary habits, lack of sunlight exposure and calcium, exercise and obesity.
Women more vulnerable Estrogen is important in the body to maintain good bone health. Women’s ovary stops functioning once they stop menstruating and the estrogen level in the body is gradually reduced.
When estrogen level is reduced menopause (A natural decline in reproductive hormones when a woman reaches her late 40s or early 50s) comes in. In post menopause the quality of the bone goes on decreasing.
This can be prevented if the women is physically active, doing exercises maintaining body weight and other physical activity.
As for women being more prone to the ailment, Dr Raviraj A., senior orthopedic surgeon at Apollo hospital, said, “In Bengaluru approximately 30% to 40% are suffering from osteoporosis, where 80% of the population with osteoporosis is women over the age of 50 years. After menopause, women lose about 1% to 2% of their bone density. The bone quality decreases gradually and unless women are physically active, maintain ideal body weight, take regular calcium and vitamin D supplements, the will be vulnerable osteoporosis.”