Health Watch

Osteopenia and Osteoporosis

Osteopenia and OsteoporosisBones are an integral part of the human body. They provide structure, protect internal organs, and work together with muscles to allow movement. They also regulate and store most of the body’s calcium, which keeps bones strong and healthy.

Osteopenia vs. Osteoporosis
The National Osteoporosis Foundation defines osteopenia as low bone mass that’s “lower normal but not enough to be considered osteoporosis.” Osteoporosis, on the other hand, weakens the bones and makes them prone to breaking with minor injuries or even everyday activities.

What Are the Causes?
There are certain factors that can increase the risk of getting either one of these conditions, including age, hormonal changes, and genetics. However, both conditions are preventable with the right diet and exercise recommended by your doctor. Remember: calcium is the key to bone strength, and vitamin D helps the body absorb calcium.

St. Louis Bone Density ExamWhat can I do?
It’s never too early to start taking care of your bones. If you’re at risk of developing either one of these conditions, your doctor may recommend a bone mineral density (BMD) test to measure your bones’ density. This examination estimates the amount of bone mineral content in specific areas of the body, including the spine, hip, and forearm. At Watson Imaging Center, we use the latest technology for our radiology exams, so tell your doctor you choose Watson Imaging Center for your bone density scans in St. Louis and St. Joseph, Missouri.

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