Osteoporosis can be treated depending on condition and is preventable with healthy lifestyle habits. The Department of Endocrinology at Singapore General Hospital explains how to do so.
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Your doctor will study your medical history and carry out urine and blood tests as well as x-rays to diagnose osteoporosis. A bone mineral density test, such as a dual energy x-ray absorptiometry or DXA test, will be carried out to determine your risk for fractures. This quick and painless test is similar to an X-ray but uses less radiation.
Osteoporosis treatment will depend on your age, the stage of the disease and your risk for fractures. If your osteoporosis is at an early stage, you may require only lifestyle changes to manage the disease. These lifestyle modifications will focus on nutrition and exercise to strengthen bones and prevent bone loss.
If you have a high risk of fractures, you will be prescribed medications such as bisphosphonates, e.g. Alendronate ,Risedronate or Zoledronate. Other medicines such as Strontium Ranelate, Denosumab, Teriparatide are also approved for use in men. If you have testosterone deficiency, your doctor may recommend testosterone replacement therapy as part of your osteoporosis treatment.
How to prevent osteoporosis in men
“Bones continually grow in a natural process called remodelling, in which old bone cells are replaced by new ones. To make new bone, your body needs plenty of calcium and vitamin D,” says Dr Chandran. In addition:
- Maintain a healthy weight
- Be physically active and do weight-bearing exercises to strengthen bones
- Have a balanced diet (that includes the recommended amounts of calcium and vitamin D)
- Avoid smoking
- Reduce your alcohol intake
- Get treatment for any underlying medical conditions that can affect your bone health
- Check with your doctor about adjusting or replacing any existing medications that can affect your bone health