Who Is at Risk for Developing Osteoporosis?
Women are at greatest risk for developing osteoporosis, although men may develop it as well. Osteoporosis is suspected if there has already been a fracture with little or no trauma, or if any of the following risk factors are present:
- Estrogen deficiency from early menopause (before age 45, either natural or surgical) or no period for a long time (months to a year)
- Personal history of fracture (broken bone) as an adult
- Family history of osteoporosis or bone fracture
- Small thin frame and/or low body weight (less than 127 lbs)
- Low intake of calcium (avoidance of dairy products)
- Immobilization or lack of exercise
- Cigarette smoking
- Excessive alcohol intake
- Other medical problems--such as thyroid and parathyroid conditions, digestive problems, eating disorders, kidney disease, rheumatoid arthritis, asthma, cancer, and paralysis
- Use of certain medications--such as steroids, thyroid hormone, blood thinners, anticonvulsants, and diuretics
- While osteoporosis can occur in anyone, it is more common in Caucasian and Asian women.