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Osteoporosis Is A Disease That Disproportionately Affects Postmenopausal Women Essay

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Introduction: Osteoporosis is a disease that disproportionately affects postmenopausal women. It is an important disease for public health to address as it greatly contributes to frailty and risk of injury, largely due to fractures, and the associated burdens on the health care system. Literally translating to “porous bones”, osteoporosis occurs when bones lose their density, and the inner bone matrix becomes much more brittle (Figure 1).1,2 Health adult bones are in a constantly dynamic state, with living cells that multiply to grow and repair bones as we age. Bones structurally consist of a hard, calcified outer layer, and an inner matrix made of collagen and non-collagen proteins.3 Healthy bone mass, and the structure of this inner matrix, is maintained through processes called resorption and remodeling.1 Resorption occurs as some cells dissolve bone matrix for the body to reabsorb and reuse the minerals, and remodeling occurs simultaneously as other cells deposit new bone matrix proteins to replace the dissolved minerals. Each remodeling activity is associated with a slight net loss in bone mass, and as such, healthy adults achieve peak bone density in their early 20s, and bone density gradually declines thereafter.1,4
Pathophysiological Changes: Osteoporosis occurs when the resorption process outpaces remodelling, and the inner matrix is dissolved at a quicker rate than it can be replaced. This ultimately leads to significantly less dense bones which are prone to
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