What is the meaning of the term osteopenia?

Listen to pronunciation. (OS-tee-oh-PEE-nee-uh) A condition in which there is a lower-than-normal bone mass or bone mineral density (the amount of bone mineral contained in a certain amount of bone).

What happens when you have osteopenia?

When you have osteopenia, your bones are weaker than they used to be but not weak enough for you to be diagnosed with osteoporosis. That’s a condition in which bones are so thin they break easily. If your bones keep getting thinner over time, though, osteopenia can turn into osteoporosis.

What is the best and safest treatment for osteopenia?

There are several medications which can be effective in reducing bone loss, but these all come with the risk of side effects as well. Currently, the only drugs approved for osteopenia (osteoporosis prevention) are Actonel and Evista.

Does osteopenia need to be treated?

Osteopenia can be treated either with exercise and nutrition or with medications. But some doctors are increasingly wary about overmedicating people who have osteopenia. The fracture risk is low to begin with, and research has shown that medication may not reduce it that much.

Do you have pain with osteopenia?

Most people who have osteopenia don’t have symptoms. Loss of bone mass isn’t painful. Broken bones or fractures can occur, but these problems tend to happen once you have osteoporosis.

How much vitamin D should I take if I have osteopenia?

Experts recommend 600 international units (IU) of vitamin D per day for adults up to age 70, and 800 IU for people 71 and older. If you’re not getting enough from sunlight and food, you may need to take a supplement.

Does osteopenia get worse?

People who have osteopenia have a lower BMD than normal, but it’s not a disease. However, having osteopenia does increase your chances of developing osteoporosis. This bone disease causes fractures, stooped posture, and can lead to severe pain and loss of height….DEXA test.

T-score Diagnosis
–2.5 or more osteoporosis

What does osteopenia stand for in medical terms?

Osteopenia is a condition that describes a lack of mineral density in the bones. ‘Osteo’ means “related to bones”, and ‘penia’, means “to lack or have a deficiency”. This condition is essentially the preliminary form of osteoporosis and indicates low bone mineral density (BMD)—the total bone mineral composition of a person’s bones.

What should you do if you have osteopenia?

Treatment for osteopenia depends on the person. The first step is to determine if the individual is at a high risk for fracture, in which case certain bone health medications are used to prevent bone breakdown and build the skeleton back up as much as possible.

How does osteopenia affect the bone mineral density?

Bone mineral density (BMD) is the measurement of how much bone mineral is in your bones. Your BMD estimates the chances of breaking a bone from a normal activity. People who have osteopenia have a lower BMD than normal, but it’s not a disease. However, having osteopenia does increase your chances of developing osteoporosis.

How can you tell if you have osteopenia?

Osteopenia does not have any apparent symptoms. Without undergoing an x-ray or test to determine bone density levels, it can be difficult to tell whether this condition is present. Bones fracture easily: A person who has osteopenia may fracture bones very easily, as bone density is low, causing bones to be considerably more weak or thin.