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Suggest treatment for low bone density

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Internal Medicine Specialist
Practicing since : 1980
Answered : 1357 Questions
My bone density test showed I am in the lower third of my age group as far as having strong bones. I am a 78 year Old male. I am very surprised at this as I still am strong , work at a grocery store walk a lot and have had no health Issues. I play a lot of golf in the summer and walk a lot. The reason for the bone scan was that I fractured a lower Back vertebra when I lifted a heavy box the wrong way. My back is better and I'm. Back at work but I would like To know if there is more I can do than take calcium, vitamin d and drink more milk!! Thanks.
Posted Sun, 23 Feb 2014 in General Health
Answered by Dr. Rakesh Karanwal 1 hour later
Brief Answer: You need high doses of calcium, vit D +alendronate Detailed Answer: Hi Mr. XXXXXXX Thanks for your query. Firstly, weak, thinned bones have nothing to do with being physically strong and active. Strength of the bones is derived from the calcium deposited in the matrix (a network of fibers made of proteins) of the bones. Bones become weak and fragile when their calcium content gets drastically reduced. This condition is called osteoporosis. This occurs particularly in the elderly age group and, after menopause in females. Under these circumstances, even a minor jerk or a fall may cause a fracture, particularly of the vertebrae and wrists and hands; as it happened in your case. I am afraid that, merely taking calcium and vitamin D, constitutes half the treatment. The scientific method would be to get your Blood Vitamin D levels estimated to assess the degree of Vit D deficiency. The dose of Vitamin D in the initial stages should be high so as to ensure that its deficiency is corrected at the earliest possible. Thereafter, the dose has to be titrated so as to maintain Blood Vitamin D level within desirable range. At the same time, at least 1gm Calcium should be taken daily, in addition to adequate milk intake. Since the bone scan report suggests severe osteoporosis, I would suggest that you- in consultation with your treating doctor- also take a weekly dose of alendronate, which will greatly facilitate calcium deposition in the bones. Hope I have addressed to your concerns to your complete satisfaction and you find my response helpful and informative. I will be happy to answer further queries, if any. Fond regards and have a nice day, Col (Dr.) Rakesh Karanwal
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